Recommendations from Sierra Leone’s 1st Commercial Law Summit published ahead of Invest Sierra Leone

Recommendations emerging from Sierra Leone’s first ever Commercial Law Summit (14 March 2017), as endorsed by Sierra Leone’s Attorney General and Minister of Justice Joseph Fitzgerald Kamara and Chief Justice, Abdulai Hamid Charm, are published today in a report by leading global law firm, Herbert Smith Freehills.

The summit was organised by Herbert Smith Freehills in collaboration with Standard Chartered Bank, the UK Sierra Leone Pro Bono Network, and the UK and Sierra Leonean governments, with support from ROLE UK and UKAid.

The Report summarises the key discussions and outcomes of the Summit, including the reform recommendations that were identified during the workshops and an action plan for their implementation.

According to Herbert Smith Freehills, work has begun on a number of priority reforms, including the development of a continuing legal education framework for Sierra Leonean lawyers. Over the next year, the implementation working group will work closely with the current government, the future government and their key development partners to progress the priority reforms and to track and evaluate the broader impact of the Summit.

Regulation was identified as a key topic of interest to potential investors at last year’s Invest Sierra Leone – the only annual forum dedicated to investment in Sierra Leone.

At this year’s Invest Sierra Leone, Sierra Leone’s Attorney General, Joseph Fitzgerald Kamara, will be speaking on the regulatory infrastructure in Sierra Leone, and updating the audience on Sierra Leone’s accession to the New York Convention, one of the key instruments in international arbitration.

Joseph Fitzgerald Kamara explains that guaranteeing security and redress makes investors more prepared to take other risks and is one of their priority considerations. “A reliable regulatory and legal system is essential for investors, as it reduces the risks they face when entering into commercial agreements. Potential investors arriving in Sierra Leone, will generally have calculated their expected return on investment, but often seek further clarity around their security of investment. They have a range of questions. Is my money secure? If I have a problem in my business, can I expect justice will be done? Will I have fair and equal access to the court system? These questions are paramount to any investor who wants to invest large amounts of money in Sierra Leone. Our job is to create a legal regulatory framework which protects both the interests of the investor and those of Sierra Leone.”

Invest Sierra Leone, is in its third year, and is a collaboration between Herbert Smith Freehills and Insight, Sierra Leone’s most authoritative business journal.

It was launched in 2015 at the House of Commons and is spearheaded annually by Dr Samura Kamara - the ruling party’s presidential candidate for Sierra Leone’s 2018 elections, previously the Minister of Foreign Affairs.

For more information on Invest Sierra Leone 2017 click here

To read the recommendations from Sierra Leone’s 2017 Commercial Law Summit click here

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