This has been an exciting year for MIGA , in part because the agency has introduced changes to its policies and operational regulations enabling it to provide new and innovative types of coverage .
One such cover which is particularly relevant in today’s market is MIGA’s new temporary business interruption (TBI ), a product offered as a subset of MIGA’s traditional war and civil disturbance coverage. TBI covers equity investors against losses arising from a war, civil disturbance, or terrorism event in the host country that causes a temporary shutdown due to asset damage, forced abandonment, or loss of use. Unlike the traditional cover which requires a total abandonment and “walk-away” by the investor, TBI enables investors to shut down for as little as 30 days and for up to a year while still maintaining a financially viable and even profitable operation. The key to this cover is the unique compensation structure, which goes beyond coverage of damage to assets to actually cover a company’s lost income during the period of shutdown. Compensation extends to continuing expenses, such as payroll and debt service; includes those extraordinary expenses required to resume operations more expeditiously, such as relocating the project to a safer area or renting replacement equipment; and perhaps most importantly covers the actual lost income, including the company’s profits based on historical earnings.
This product should prove particularly useful to investors operating in post-conflict countries  where the possibility of political violence recurring is very real. Because these areas tend to be so inherently risky, investors rely on high profit margins as incentive for operating in these regions. With MIGA’s TBI cover serving as an additional protection against potential losses due to necessary but temporary shutdown, investors will be further incentivized not only to initially invest, but to continue operating even after a political violence event occurs. No longer must a company abandon its project in order to collect on MIGA’s insurance policy; it can continue operating seamlessly as a profitable enterprise, and MIGA will assist it to get up and running. This very powerful tool could potentially have great developmental impacts in countries such as Afghanistan where investments are so desperately needed.