Pastures new for Freshfields as Moroccan government comes calling

The Moroccan government has hired Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer to advise on a trio of massive construction projects near Tangier.



The Moroccan government has hired Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer to advise on a trio of massive construction projects near Tangier.

The three developments, together worth more than e3bn (£2.23bn), include a new sea port, a high-speed rail link and, most recently, the creation of a new Renault-Nissan factory.

Freshfields has used its Paris office to cash in on the region’s building boom.

Last month a Freshfields team acted in a e600m (£445.93m) deal to construct the Renault-Nissan plant.

Led by partner Amir Jahanguiri, the firm represented the Moroccan state and its agencies. The Renault-Nissan Alliance was advised by lawyers from French firm Gide Loyrette Nouel’s Casablanca office, while Allen & Overy advised the Office National de l’Electricité.

Jahanguiri told The Lawyer: “We have been working for the Moroccan government directly and indirectly for the past four years.”

The association began in 2003 when Freshfields advised on the awarding of concessions for the new e2bn (£1.49bn) Tanger-Med Port. Norton Rose and Gide Loyrette Nouel worked with a number of the bidders. The project, due for completion in 2010, is now entering its third phase.

And in a e1bn (£740m) project, Freshfields is advising the Moroccan government on a plan to create a high-speed rail link between Tangier and Marrakech.

The firm represented the Moroccan authorities in talks with the French government, which did not use outside counsel.