Kyrgyzstan > Law firm and leading lawyer rankings
Legal market overview
Legal market overview
Next generation lawyers
- Jyldyz Tagaeva - Kalikova & Associates Law Firm
Kyrgyzstan’s economy is largely dependent on the Kumtor gold mine, which accounts for 10% of the nation’s GDP, and is thus highly sensitive to external factors. The Kyrgyz government has pledged to improve governance at the local and national level to combat corruption in the public sphere and diversify economic activity. One of the key aims in this regard is to develop the exporting of hydroelectricity as an alternative to gold production.
The legal market has experienced a slow year due to an economic recession that has hindered a number of foreign investment projects. The country’s economy shrank by 2.3% in the first half of 2016 due to reduced output in the gold sector and a weak performance outside of gold. The legal market therefore revolved mainly around litigation and regulatory work. None of the global firms have established offices in the Kyrgyz Republic, but CIS regional firms such as Centil Law and GRATA International act as local counsel to major international firms.
The ranking is based on quality and scope of service – all firms in the market have a generalist practice and take on a diverse range of mandates.
Arte Law Firm advises on all aspects of commercial law and is particularly strong in copyright and trade marks, ‘offering feasible solutions followed by perfect execution’. The firm’s growing aviation practice assisted Air Manas with the acquisition and financing of its third Boeing 737-800, and with the expansion of air transportation routes to India and China. The firm also continues to handle the estate of Chingiz Aitmatov, which includes negotiating and drafting movie production agreements with a leading Russian television channel. Partner Aisulu Chubarova has acted for clients such as Microsoft and Business Software Alliance on anti-piracy campaigns and copyright protection. Chubarova also advised Tractebel Engineering on the Toktogul hydropower station, a project financed by the Eurasian Development Bank. Omurgul Balpanova is a ‘a very diligent and scrupulous lawyer in the area of intellectual property’.
Centil Law (formerly Colibri Law Firm) assists international firms such as DLA Piper Ukraine LLC and CMS on Kyrgyz law. Experienced corporate and M&A practice head Kerim Begaliev advised the Islamic Corporation for the Development of the Private Sector regarding a line of financing to the leading state-owned Kyrgyz bank for the development of Islamic financing in the country. Begaliev also advised leading Turkish retailer LC Waikiki on establishing a presence in Bishkek and Osh. Denis Bagrov leads the firm’s mining and infrastructure practice. Bagrov’s work includes representing Kapsch TrafficCom in the first nationwide multilateral infrastructure project, and advising on the acquisition of the majority shareholding in a local company on behalf of a major international civil aviation company.
Kalikova & Associates Law Firm provides a full service in many sectors, advising clients such as Novartis International, The Coca-Cola Company and the Export-Import Bank of China. Founding partner Gulnara Kalikova is representing Centerra Gold in the restructuring of the Kumtor mine project, following an intervention by the Kyrgyz government, and in separate criminal investigations. Ulan Tilenbaev advised the joint venture of the only international five-star business hotel in Kyrgyzstan on shareholder relations, taxation and the extension of its non-standard land lease agreement with the city of Bishkek. Tilenbaev also worked on mining and environmental licenses, capital contributions of shareholders, industrial facilities and mining sites for Kyrgyzaltyn’s joint venture with a major Turkish copper ore producer. Senior lawyer Jyldyz Tagaeva was involved in much of the work mentioned above.
Grata International opened its Kyrgyz office in 2004 and has since been subcontracted by major international firms. Led by Kanat Seidaliev, the Bishkek team is particularly strong in banking and finance issues and is known for its expertise in the telecoms sector. Nurlan Kyshtobaev has advised the EBRD on a number of unsecured loan transactions with major local microfinance companies and banks. The firm also advised on cross-border matters, including the financing of sugar production in Kyrgyzstan and the acquisition of a leading logistics service provider in the region. Notable clients include the China Development Bank, Finca Bank and the International Finance Corporation.
Veritas Law Agency advises on equity, M&A and dispute resolution for clients such as the EBRD and Philip Morris. Managing partner Elena Bit-Avragim assisted with the purchase of land for the construction of a tourist centre and advised on the acquisition of equity by private foreign investors.