The Salvage Association (SA) will reopen offices in Korea and South Africa in an attempt to resolve its £1m a year deficit.

And it plans to enter other hull and machinery markets, protection and indemnity clubs and to take a more direct role in litigation outside the London Market.

The marine casualty operation first reported losses after Lloyd's withdrew millions of pounds of subsidies. Last December, the 145-year-old association was sold to British Maritime Technology (BMT) and was losing £3m a year.

Staff were made redundant, SA moved out of its large Leadenhall offices and the two companies were consolidated, saving £2m.

But SA chief executive officer John Noble said the amount of business has remained the same and he "cannot see huge savings without reducing effectiveness".

Now he has plans to break even by the end of September 2003 through expanding the company.

SA, which currently operates in 13 countries, will work outside Lloyd's and reopen its offices in Pusan, South Korea and Cape Town next year. They were closed before BMT took over the company.

"It is important to open them again before they lose momentum," Noble said. "We are also in the final stages of negotiation for an office in India and I see China as very important."

SA also plans to open offices in the US and Brazil in the next two years and to address other markets, such as energy.

"It currently represents 5% of our business, but I would be happy if it were 10% to15% in the next two years. We have the resources to do it."