The rise reflects ’the continued challenging trading environment faced by many UK firms’, says ABI

Trade credit insurance payouts to help businesses survive bad debts soared to their highest H1 level since 2018 in the first half of 2023, new figures by the ABI have revealed.

The data, which was released yesterday (30 October 2023), showed payments hit £101m in H1 2023, up from £82m during the same period last year.

It came as a result of trade credit insurers registered with the ABI receiving 9,671 new claims, up 54% on the 6,275 received in the first half of 2022.

The association said the rise reflected “the continued challenging trading environment faced by many UK firms”.

Lucy Fraser, policy adviser for general insurance at the ABI, added: “Our latest figures highlight the vital role trade credit insurers are providing in supporting their customers through the continued tough business trading environment, including rising operating costs and pressures on wage growth.”


Meanwhile, the figures showed that insurers in this market had shown particular support for construction sector businesses this year.

For example, the amount of coverage approved on construction buyers as of the end of H1 2023 was over £29.6bn, while the number of claims paid and reserved was £76.5m.

Fraser said that trade credit insurance was “more important than ever” in helping businesses survive and grow.

“During the Covid-19 pandemic, businesses were buoyed by government support measures such as furlough and business loans, alongside restrictions on winding up petitions,” she added.

”However, since protective policy measures ended the commercial landscape has faced a resurgence of credit risk and payment defaults.

“This makes trade credit insurance more important than ever in supporting businesses not just to survive, but to grow, in turn helping stimulate economic growth.

“Trade credit insurance provides reliable financing decisions based on the creditworthiness of a supplier.”