Clients drawn to domicile for establishing captives to cover liability

Marsh will follow Aon's lead by setting up an operation in Malta. The move has been triggered by its clients' interest in establishing captives in the domicile.

Growth in the Maltese captive market has been sparked by brokers' clients seeking capacity to cover difficult insurance classes such as employers' liability and professional indemnity.

Marsh Management Services Guernsey head of office John Copeland said: "Malta appears to offer a number of benefits as a captive domicile, and several of our clients have expressed an interest in domiciling there."

He said many clients based in the European Union were attracted to the territory because of its EU membership.

"The recent accession of new member states provides an expanded market for potential captive owners.

"Marsh is therefore considering the options for setting up a captive management operation in Malta, although at this stage the structure of any such operation remains to be decided."

Marsh has been speaking to Maltese captive management specialist United Insurance Management (UIM) about possible opportunities.

UIM managing director Peter Grima said: "We have spent a lot of time marketing ourselves as an onshore entity. Brokers are approaching us, very much led by the client, because there is potential for captives to cover liability insurance.

"We are Englsih-speaking, with high quality legal, accountancy and IT skills."

On 1 July , the Malta Financial Services Authority (MFSA) issued its new regulatory rules for insurance managers to create and manage captives and protected cell companies.

Licence applications have started to be submitted, said the MFSA.