Brexit WIN: UK legal services ‘rack up £5.6BN surplus’ – top firms see 4% growth in 2021
UK economy: 'It's going to be a difficult few months' says expert
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The news comes as TheCityUK’s annual review, titled ‘Legal excellence, internationally renowned UK legal services 2021’, found that the UK ranked second for legal services fees globally, behind the United States – generating a huge trade surplus. Revenue of the UK’s largest 100 law firms grew by four percent in 2021 to £28.8bn, the report states, while there are more than 200 foreign law firms with offices in the UK.
The report says TheCityUK’s legal services group, which is chaired by former Herbert Smith Freehills senior partner James Palmer, has been “building and maintaining strong relationships with senior government, regulatory and industry stakeholders to maintain the competitiveness of the sector, work that includes ‘creating both new export markets and building deeper links with existing markets’.”
Derek Sweeting QC, outgoing chair of the Bar Council of England and Wales, which represents barristers, welcomed the report, adding that analysis from its insurer, Bar Mutual, showed overseas income had tripled for barristers from £114m in 2005 to more than £394m last year.
Calling the data a “reminder of the global strength of our legal sector”, Mr Sweeting referenced a recent report on the value of English law as an international dispute resolution tool.
With the news coming at a time when many doubted post-Brexit Britain would succeed, it appears economic doom predictors miscalculated their sums.
London’s financial sector is also continuing to operate as a major global trading hub in spite of leaving the European Union.
Trade with the EU has fallen sharply, and it is likely to carry on going down, resulting in the European Central Bank attempting to take action to curb Britain’s growth, and recover losses.
Legal sources have warned that the European Central Bank is threatening to remove their EU banking licences – which they need to operate – if they don’t move more staff and resources to the bloc.
The move includes requiring more senior bankers to move from London to other hubs such as Paris, Frankfurt and Dublin, however, many bankers are refusing to comply as they feel London is a more prominent global centre of finance.
Such successes prompted major European nations to pay attention to post-Brexit Britain.
A recent report in German media outlet Bild praised the UK’s growth from six to 6.4 percent this year, much higher than the 2.5 percent forecast in Berlin.
The report in Bild said: “Whatever the case, the British job market is now booming, the unemployment rate is falling (October: 4.2 percent) and creating record numbers of new jobs (1.2 million from September to November alone).”
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The trend is set to continue with the IMF also backing Britain.
Twice each year the IMF publishes its “World Economic Outlook”, showing forecast growth of the world’s economies, among other measures.
The body predicts Britain will sit on top of the European economic pyramid.
The largest growth will be Britain with 6.76 percent, followed by France with 6.29 percent, Italy on 5.77 and Spain on 5.74.
The EU average across the 27 member nations is predicted to be around 5.1 percent, move than 1.5 percent below that of Brexit Britain.
One of the key reasons for success appears to be the notion the UK remains open to talented workers and developing successful trade links with fast-growing emerging economies will be critical to realising the UK’s long-term growth potential.
Aside from the surging legal services sector being exported to the world, the UK has also secured a host of post-Brexit trade deals.
Agreements with New Zealand, Australia and continued deals with multiple pre-Brexit partners has allowed the UK to continue its financial growth.
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