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HFW Research: London Has Over 80% Share Of Global Maritime Arbitration Market

10 August 2020

Research by global, sector-focused law firm HFW has found that London continues to dominate the market for international maritime arbitration, accounting for more than 80 percent of all cases globally.

London handled 1,737 maritime arbitrations in 2019 – up 14% on the previous year – which equates to around 83% of all international maritime arbitrations that year, according to HFW’s analysis of data from major arbitral institutions around the world.

Singapore and Hong Kong – London’s two strongest competitors – trailed with 229 and 124 international maritime arbitrations in 2019, respectively.

You can read the full report here:

Craig Neame, Partner, HFW:

“This data clearly shows the extent of London’s continued dominance in the international maritime arbitration industry, and we see nothing to suggest that will change anytime soon. Credibility and trust in London’s arbitration centres remain high amongst international parties – the London Maritime Arbitrators Association accounted for 96% of all international maritime arbitrations globally in 2019.

“Singapore and Hong Kong remain attractive to companies in Asia, and in recent years the UAE has launched the Middle East’s first dedicated maritime arbitration centre – the Emirates Maritime Arbitration Centre – and the Nordic Offshore and Maritime Arbitration Association was established as an alternative to post-Brexit London for both maritime and non-maritime international disputes. They may emerge as future forces in international maritime arbitration, but, for now, London – and English law – continue to rule the waves.

“As the UK continues through its post-EU transition period, and the world grapples with the Covid-19 pandemic and its economic aftershocks, it is difficult to predict with absolute certainty the future maritime arbitral landscape. However, as companies within the industry start to face economic challenges and ensuing disputes as a result of the post-pandemic global financial downturn, we expect the use of arbitration to increase. In these challenging times, the flexibility, faster resolution and potentially lower costs offered by arbitration may make it an increasingly popular choice for resolving maritime disputes.”

HFW is widely recognised as the world’s leading shipping and maritime law firm, and has been serving clients in the industry for more than 135 years.

The firm has over 200 shipping lawyers and Master Mariners across the Americas, Europe, the Middle East and Asia-Pacific, specialising in dry shipping, admiralty and crisis management, and transactional work.

It represents the full spectrum of those involved in the industry, including shipowners and charterers, P&I Clubs, banks, international agencies, shipyards, marine insurance underwriters, governments and brokers across the entire shipping life cycle, from design to recycling.

In 2020, HFW won the Excellence in Maritime Law award at the Lloyd’s List Global Awards, which recognises the world’s best shipping law firm.

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