Rating Risk

Feb 24, 2010 (LBO) – A fresh risk evaluation of Sri Lanka by London insurers, considered critical in attracting investors after the end of its ethnic war, has been delayed by elections, official involved in the matter said. London underwriters have reduced the risk rating after the 30-year ethnic war ended in May 2009, with Sri Lanka now having the lowest rating in south Asia.

But the island continues to be a ‘listed’ area for war risk insurance which is considered bad for its image and efforts to attract foreign investors in its post-war economic revival.

A team from a business intelligence firm hired by London insurers was supposed to visit Sri Lanka in February for a fresh assessment before the new rating is made.

The move followed a visit to London by Sri Lankan shipping and defence officials for talks with international insurers in an effort to lobby them to get the island off the listed area.

“They were in the third or fourth week of February,” said an official connected with the talks.

“But we’ve now advised them that it is better to visit after the Apil 8 parliamentary elections.”

The re-scheduled visit by the intelligence team is expected in the first week of May.

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