Thursday, May 16, 2019

Despite Brexit Fears the UK Continues to be the Arbitration Point of Choice for Global Shipping

New Report Confirms Little Has Changed When it Comes to Legal Disputes
Shipping News Feature
UK – A report 'The Maritime Arbitration Universe In Numbers One Year On', from global, sector-focused law firm HFW has found that London continues to dominate the market for maritime arbitration, despite suggestions that Brexit would see activity shift to emerging disputes hubs around the world. According to HFW London accounts for more than 80% of such global maritime activity, according to HFW's analysis of data from 13 major maritime institutions around the world.

London handled approximately 1,500 maritime arbitrations in 2017, compared to around 140 in Singapore and just over 100 in Hong Kong. HFW's research also found that, after local law, English law is the most commonly chosen law in arbitrations globally across all sectors, including maritime arbitrations. English law was the applicable law in 85% of all LCIA arbitrations in 2017. Craig Neame, Partner, HFW, observed:

"There has been a lot of debate about whether London will lose business as a result of Brexit. Our research clearly shows that, when it comes to shipping disputes, London is still the clear market leader, and we see nothing to suggest that will change in the foreseeable future.

"Singapore and Hong Kong will continue to be attractive to companies operating in Asia, and Dubai and the Nordic countries will develop a larger arbitration caseload once EMAC and NOMA become more established. But English law will remain a popular choice among those in the shipping industry and we expect London to continue to attract the majority of maritime arbitrations."

HFW is a widely regarded shipping and maritime law firm and has been serving clients in the industry for over 135 years, currently with more than 190 shipping lawyers across the Americas, Europe, the Middle East and Asia-Pacific, specialising in dry shipping, admiralty and crisis management, and transactional work.