Demystifying freeports

It was interesting to read in London International Shipping Week that the British public believe Freeports will have a positive economic impact but remain unclear on how they will work. Is it the lack of clarity around the set-up and operation of the Freeports, or how the Freeports are expected to benefit our economy?

Related briefings

Mental capacity and divorce

The question sometimes arises in a divorce as to whether one or both parties have mental capacity to litigate. If a party lacks that mental capacity, they will need someone to make decisions for them during the divorce process. This person is called a ‘litigation friend’.

Our future town and city centres

Post-Covid, how do we revive our urban centres, now and in the future? What does the future hold for work, retail, entertainment and living? These were some of the issues discussed when Birmingham real estate partner, Beth McArdle, chaired a session at the Big Tent Festival 2021 in Coventry. Joining Beth on the panel were: Siraj Ahmed Shaikh, Director of Research at Institute of Future Transport & Cities, Coventry University; Trish Willetts, Coventry BID Director; and Cllr Jim O’Boyle, Cabinet Member for Jobs, Regeneration and Climate Change, Coventry City Council.

Guidance from the Supreme Court on liquidated damages

The Supreme Court provided some welcome clarification on the law relating to liquidated damages in the recent judgment of Triple Point Technology Inc (Respondent) v PTT Public Company Ltd (Appellant) (2021). In doing so, the Supreme Court concluded that the Court of Appeal’s ‘radical re-interpretation’ of the law on liquidated damages clauses was ‘inconsistent with commercial reality and the accepted function of liquidated damages’.

HR podcast: Kiss and tell – relationships at work

Andy Graham, Amy Anderson and Amy Leech discuss relationships at work in light of recent events. This episode covers: why it is important to have a relationships at work policy; the problems relationships at work could cause; and top tips for managing relationships at work.

Building Safety Bill: key points for the construction industry

The Building Safety Bill was finally introduced into Parliament on 30 June 2021 with the aim of delivering fundamental reform to the building safety system. The Bill’s progress through Parliament will be closely monitored as the construction industry looks to prepare for the potentially wide-ranging impact of this complex piece of legislation.

Latest Briefings

Processing Covid-19 vaccination data in the workplace

As the National COVID-19 Vaccination Strategy in Ireland gathers pace, employers are frequently asking whether they can make decisions on who returns to work and when based on an employee’s vaccination status. Employers, in particular, continue to ask whether they can lawfully collect and process information about the vaccination status of their employees. In this client update, we explain the key considerations.

Ontario launches consultation on improving tower crane health and safety requirements

On 14 July 2021, the Ministry of Labour, Training and Skills Development launched a public consultation on Improving Health and Safety Requirements relating to Tower Cranes. The consultation process is aimed at updating and clarifying existing legislative requirements for the operation of tower cranes in the province.

Contributed surplus: it’s not capital!

In our previous paper, we discussed the meaning of share premium, the various ways a company may use share premium and its importance when determining the assessable capital of a company. In this paper we discuss contributed surplus, another frequently misunderstood concept which is distinct from and is not to be confused with share premium.

The Lugano clock has stalled: what now for dispute resolution clauses?

Since 1 January 2021, Regulation (EU) 1215/2012 on jurisdiction and the recognition and enforcement of judgments in civil and commercial matters (Brussels Recast) and the 2007 Convention on jurisdiction and the recognition and enforcement of judgments in civil and commercial matters (Lugano Convention) no longer apply to the UK. There is no mechanism allowing the UK to accede to Brussels Recast in its own right. Under the Lugano Convention, however, the UK is entitled to apply for accession following certain conditions specified in Article 72. Although the UK applied for accession in April 2020, it has not yet been ‘invited’ to accede. The European Commission, however, recently notified the Swiss Federal Council (as Depositary of the Lugano Convention) that, representing the EU, it does not consent to the UK’s accession. Whether this is the final decision from the EU, or whether the European Council will vote on the issue, remains to be seen. In the absence of unanimous consent of all contracting parties coupled with the enforcement gap of several months even if accession to the Lugano Convention is permitted, Irish (or indeed EU or EFTA) contracting parties with UK entities should continue to give careful consideration to their dispute resolutions clauses.


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