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MinLaw renews licences of nine foreign law firms in Singapore

MinLaw renews licences of nine foreign law firms in Singapore

Source: Business Times
Article Date: 29 Dec 2020
Author: Fiona Lam

The QFLP scheme introduced back in 2008 seeks to support the growth of the Republic's key economic sectors, grow the legal sector and offer additional opportunities for Singapore lawyers.

The Ministry of Law (MinLaw) will renew the Qualifying Foreign Law Practice (QFLP) licences of all nine firms in Singapore that are on the scheme.

They are Allen & Overy; Clifford Chance; Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher; Jones Day; Latham & Watkins; Linklaters; Norton Rose Fulbright; Sidley Austin; and White & Case.

Introduced in 2008, the QFLP scheme seeks to support the growth of the Republic's key economic sectors, grow the legal sector and offer additional opportunities for Singapore lawyers.

It allows foreign law practices with QFLP licences to practise in permitted areas of Singapore law, excluding domestic areas of litigation and general practice.

These firms employ about 190 Singapore-qualified lawyers at their offices in the city-state, MinLaw said in a press statement on Monday.

It added that the QFLPs have "contributed strongly" to the growth of Singapore's legal sector, generating more than S$3.07 billion in offshore revenue since 2013 when the second batch of QFLPs was awarded.

As per past practice, the licence renewal for the nine firms is subject to conditions including the requirement to meet quantitative and qualitative targets.

In determining the renewal and tenure of each licence, MinLaw took into account the firm's performance during the licence period relative to its earlier commitments, as well as its contributions to Singapore.

In addition, the ministry considered each law firm's proposal for the new licence period in areas such as the number of lawyers to be based in the Singapore office, its plans to establish new practice areas, and the level of training and career opportunities offered to Singapore lawyers.

Source: Business Times © Singapore Press Holdings Ltd. Permission required for reproduction.

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