Saudi Arabia grants three foreign law firms licenses to operate

10 March 2023

Saudi Arabia grants three foreign law firms licenses to operate

Clifford Chance, Latham & Watkins, Herbert Smith Freehills will each alter their legal structures in Riyadh.

Herbert Smith Freehills, Clifford Chance and Latham & Watkins have all been granted foreign law firm licenses by the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, according to a report by Arab News and confirmed by the law firms’ websites.

Herbert Smith Freehills has been operating in the region for 45 years, the firm said in a statement. “This region is strategically important to our clients and the firm, so we are very pleased indeed to be one of the first firms to receive a foreign law firm license in the Kingdom,” said Stuart Paterson, the firm’s Dubai-based managing partner in the Middle East. “This enables us to better serve our clients in the region and globally.”

Joza Al-Rasheed will be managing partner of HSF’s new Riyadh office.

Clifford Chance has been advising clients in Saudi Arabia for more than 40 years. Clifford Chance and Abuhimed Alsheikh Alhagbani Law Firm (AS&H) have announced the firms will enter into a 50:50 joint venture in Saudi Arabia, to be known as AS&H Clifford Chance. The joint venture will become effective May 1, 2023.

“This exciting new joint venture further cements the unique relationship that Clifford Chance and AS&H have enjoyed for the last six years in the Kingdom, and which has created an unrivalled legal powerhouse in Saudi Arabia,” said Fahad Abuhimed, AS&H Clifford Chance managing partner.

Latham & Watkins has been serving clients in Saudi Arabia for more than a decade, most recently in cooperation with The Law Firm of Salman M. Al-Sudairi, who will be managing partner of the firm’s Riyadh branch.

“We are honored to be one of the first global firms to be awarded a Foreign Law License to practice in Saudi Arabia. It’s especially gratifying having maintained a market-leading Saudi practice for more than a dozen years,” said Rich Trobman, the London- and New York-based chair and managing partner of Latham & Watkins. “Riyadh is a major commercial, financial, and innovation center in the Middle East and globally, and further establishing our presence in this fast-growing market is integral to our MENA capabilities and our global platform.”

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