Iskenderun port fire expected to generate $679mn of trade disruption: Russell Group

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According to data from Russell Group, the container fire at the Port of Iskenderun, Turkey will cause a loss in trade of around $679 million (£562.85 million).

Turkey FlagA further analysis from the data and analytics company also shows that a $36.7 million (£30 million) disruption in Iron and Steel exports and $51.4 million (£42.61 million) in plastic materials imports is expected to be disrupted by the fire.

The port suffered a fire on Monday following the earthquakes that have devastated Turkey, which has resulted in the collapse of thousands of buildings, and the deaths of more than 9,000 people.

As a result, the port has been closed with many shipping lines postponing or diverting shipments to Mersin – one of Turkey’s largest ports.

Russell Groups analysis is based on modelling from a time period of February 6-28, 2023, looking at the actions of major shipping companies, which are now offering free cancellations, amendments and changes of destination on all shipments heading to Iskenderun, throughout February.

Additionally, according to Russell’s analysis, Mersin’s trade flow during this heavy period of disruption is estimated to be $999 million (£828 million).

Iskenderun is the one of two major shipping container ports located in Turkey’s south-eastern shores. It hosts heavy industries such as steel.

Suki Basi, Russell Group Managing Director commented: “The Iskenderun incident highlights a reoccurring issue in global trade, whereby a single point of failure – such as a port closure – can have ripple events across supply chains.

“Once again, it is important in these uncertain times for reinsurers and their corporates to invest in insightful data analytics that can help them understand their exposures at any given time.”

Further, rating agency AM Best noted that the impact of the two earthquakes in Turkey, adds to what is already a challenging operating environment for re/insurers within the country.

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