Insurance for Ukrainian sea exports counselled by Asters named among top-10 deals by GTR Best Deals 2024

A "unique agreement" establishing war risk insurance mechanism for Black Sea exports has been named one of the market's top-10 deals from the previous 12 months by the Global Trade Review (GTR) Best Deals 2024.

The transaction was formalized by a Framework Reimbursement Agreement signed by the Ukrainian Export-Credit Agency with Marsh Limited as arranger, Ascot Underwriting Limited as lead underwriter, and other underwriters via Lloyd's of London/Lloyd’s Europe. Funds placed in accounts at Ukrainian state banks facilitate irrevocable letters of credit, each confirmed by DZ Bank AG.

The introduced mechanism offers war risk insurance at significantly reduced premiums compared to standard market prices. It represents a groundbreaking approach tailored to the unique challenges posed by the war in Ukraine, particularly the disruption of grain and other goods exports by the Black Sea. It offers a context-specific solution by fostering a robust first-of-its-kind public-private insurance partnership, involving Ukraine and the insurance industry, representing an innovative model for risk-sharing.

This initiative strengthens Ukraine's maritime trade resilience, its economic endurance during the war, and enhances global food security by ensuring uninterrupted flow of Ukrainian exports. The launch of this facility especially benefits the developing nations buying much of Ukraine’s grain and also help Ukraine’s recovery and reconstruction endeavors.

Asters acted as a Ukrainian law counsel for the Ukrainian Export Credit Agency, providing crucial legal advice on Ukrainian law issues throughout the negotiation and drafting of transaction documents. Brodies LLP advised the Export Credit Agency of Ukraine on the English law issues, while Norton Rose Fulbright LLP acted as legal counsel for Marsh Limited.

Asters' Senior Partner Armen Khachaturyan who led Asters' project team comments: "We are very happy to work on this truly innovative unprecedented deal recognized among the top-10 by the authoritative international review. It is difficult to overestimate its significance for securing a steady export of food and other critical supplies from Ukraine to the rest of the world at a war time through Ukraine's most convenient but extremely vulnerable route along the Black Sea. The benchmark deal may well serve as a good precedent for similar solutions in other war-affected areas of the world contributing to international trade and geopolitical stability. It feels great to be a part of this tremendous effort evidencing our commitment to Ukraine, as we help the country navigate the challenges of war and bolster the economy during this challenging time".


GTR is an independent publishing and events company covering global trade. Its editorial team considers and features a mix of trade, commodities, supply chain, export finance, and fintech innovation transactions for inclusion in its Best Deals selection.

Asters is the largest full-service law firm in Ukraine with offices in Kyiv, Brussels, London, and Washington, D.C., and access to over 125 jurisdictions through a well-developed network of partner law firms.

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