On 15 May 2023, Herbert Smith Freehills co-hosted London International Disputes Week’s inaugural International Arbitration Day, welcoming over 350 external guests to our London office. International Arbitration Day was a flagship arbitration event, showcasing the importance of London as a global arbitration centre. Herbert Smith Freehills was chosen as one of three LIDW member firms (alongside Allen & Overy and Mayer Brown) to host panel events throughout the day.

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Register to attend London International Disputes Week 2023: International Arbitration Day (15 May 2023)

This year’s London International Disputes Week (LIDW)’s International Arbitration Day will ‘follow the arbitration sun’ across key regions and jurisdictions, featuring keynote speeches and panels from some of the leading global figures from across the dispute resolution community. Herbert Smith Freehills are delighted to be a co-host of LIDW’s inaugural International Arbitration Day,  hosting a number of panels and networking events at our offices. This event is free to attend and offers both in person and virtual attendance for some sessions. Click here to find out more about all of the events on offer at LIDW’s International Arbitration Day or here for more information about the full programme for LIDW.


Our speakers from Herbert Smith Freehills across the day include:

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Inside Arbitration: Issue #7 of the publication from Herbert Smith Freehills’ Global Arbitration Practice

We are delighted to share with you the latest issue of the publication from the Herbert Smith Freehills Global Arbitration Practice, Inside Arbitration.

In addition to sharing knowledge and insight about the markets and industries in which our clients operate, the publication offers personal perspectives of our international arbitration partners from across the globe.

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Event: Investing in Latin America: How best to protect your investments, Thursday 8 March 2018

Herbert Smith Freehills and the ICC warmly invite you to attend ‘Investing in Latin America: How best to protect your investments?

Date Thursday 8 March 2018
Time 18:00: Registration
18:30: Panel discussion followed by drinks and networking
Venue Exchange House, Primrose Street, London, EC2A 2EG
Please click here to view map
Price £120 non-members/ £85 members
Registration  Click here to register with the ICC directly. Registration cannot be made through Herbert Smith Freehills.
Please note there are a limited number of spaces.


In a post-Brexit world, Latin America is likely to present British investors with significant new opportunities for growth and expansion. Drawing on the extensive experience of leading UK based practitioners and arbitrators, this seminar will analyse recent trends and examine how parties can best protect their investments in the region.

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Arbitration partner and LatAm specialist Christian Leathley moves from London to New York

Herbert Smith Freehills is pleased to announce that Christian Leathley, partner in the International Arbitration and Public International Law groups, has moved to the firm’s New York office.

Christian is both English and New York qualified. His practice centres on arbitration of investment disputes, including under investment treaties and other international agreements.  Christian is currently representing the Kingdom of Spain in claims brought against it under the Energy Charter Treaty, and the Republic of Costa Rica in claims against it under the DR-CAFTA.  Christian will continue to work with the firm’s strong network of investment arbitration specialists, who provide a seamless service to clients advising on investment protection issues and investment disputes.

Christian’s practice also encompasses international commercial arbitration. He has advised clients on commercial disputes in the energy, mining and infrastructure sectors, and his current matters include advising a major mining company in Chile, a Colombian oil company in a series of disputes that touch on business and human rights allegations, and a UK publicly listed oil company in proceedings in Argentina and Brazil, among others.

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Hola free trade! The Pacific Alliance strengthens Latin American trade aspirations as the Trans-Pacific Partnership negotiations move forward

On 10 February 2014, the Presidents of Chile, Colombia, Mexico and Peru met in Colombia at the VIII Summit of the Pacific Alliance to sign the Additional Protocol of the Framework Agreement for the Pacific Alliance. The Additional Protocol eliminates 92 percent of tariffs between the members and will enter into effect after each of the members incorporates it into their domestic framework through the appropriate legislative channels. The remaining 8 percent of tariffs that have not been liberalized mainly relate to agricultural products and will be eliminated gradually over the next few years.

This is a very significant development not just for the countries involved but for the region as a whole and the rest of the world. These four countries represent nearly 40% of the Latin American GDP and have a total population of over 210 million people. Combined, the four countries represent the eighth largest economy in the word and the seventh largest exporter.

With the potential conclusion of the Trans-Pacific Partnership in the coming year, this significant step towards strengthening the trade bloc will further cement the channels of trade with Asia that these influential Latin American economies are seeking to deepen.

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The Trans-Pacific Partnership: a New Year’s resolution of special significance

Following a further round of negotiations for the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (the TPP) held in Singapore at the start of December 2013, it is expected that the agreement will be signed in early 2014 after more than three years of highly secretive negotiations. The TPP is a regional free trade agreement which, if the negotiations are successfully concluded, could create a trade bloc second only to the European Union in the size of its total trade value. The conclusion of this agreement is expected to have enormous significance for the dynamics of global trade and the outcome is keenly anticipated.

Although the negotiations have taken place behind closed doors, which is itself a source of great concern for many observers, speculation has centred on the public commentary by the participating states around issues central to the agreement. This has been augmented by the leak of several draft chapters of the agreement over the past three years. While the negotiations are likely to have moved on significantly since they were disclosed, the leaked chapters continue to shape the discussion around the content of the TPP and its highly contentious provisions.

With the twelve state parties – including the United States, Canada, Japan, Australia and Singapore – having set the ambitious goal of reaching agreement by the end of last year, this twenty-first round of negotiations was anticipated as the potential turning point for issues believed to be the source of significant rifts in the partnership. However, reports indicate that while a resolution has not yet been reached, the agreement is likely to be concluded early in 2014.

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