The Legal 500




Legal market overview

Paraguay continues its economic emergence, enjoying continuous growth and a relatively stable financial system. The country appears to have left behind the recent political turmoil which culminated in the removal of the Lugo administration in 2012. The subsequent general elections in April 2013 were regarded as free and fair and resulted in victory for businessman Horacio Cartes from the centre-right Colorado Party. Cartes, who had entered politics only a few years prior to standing for President, is also owner of the largest conglomerate in the country, Grupo Cartes, which is active in many branches of the economy, including banking, agriculture, transportation and tobacco. Given Cartes’ business background, the legal industry largely welcomed the election result, and expects a further surge in foreign investment. This is underlined by the government’s decision to introduce a 1.5% deficit cap, which, following Ricardian economics, is supposed to bring about greater investor and consumer confidence. In response, Fitch Ratings confirmed Paraguay’s BB- rating. Cartes also turned to legal private practice market for his Attorney General, appointing Moreno Ruffinelli & Asociados’ Roberto Moreno Rodríguez for the prestigious post.

Only months after the new administration took power in August 2013, Congress passed a bill establishing the framework for public-private partnerships. The full effect of this law is yet to be evaluated but considerable investment is expected, particularly in infrastructure projects. Improvements in the infrastructure network are needed to accommodate the wave of foreign direct investment into the country. Indeed, leading corporate law firms such as Fiorio, Cardozo & Alvarado, Attorneys at Law and Peroni Sosa Tellechea Burt & Narvaja report a substantial volume of work from foreign companies seeking to incorporate Paraguayan branches and subsidiaries. This trend spans all industries, although Paraguay’s economy still remains largely agricultural, with cattle and soya being the most important resources. Paraguay’s agribusiness, however, is also being increasingly professionalised, prompting large investment opportunities for biotechnological companies, among others. Furthermore, despite being landlocked, as a strong agro-exporter the country has a sizeable and structurally important maritime-transport sector, generating considerable investment and, for law firms, regulatory, admiralty and commercial work. Renewable energy is also a thriving sector. Increasingly sophisticated environmental regulation cuts across all these sectors and here PGK Abogados y Consultores Ambientales remains the country’s most specialised service provider.

In intellectual property, attorneys are increasingly feeling the positive effects of the National Directorate of Intellectual Property; created in 2012, it handles registrations and other proceedings in a substantially faster manner than its predecessor organisation. IP boutique Zacarías & Fernández and full-service firm Berkemeyer Attorneys & Counselors stand out in this sector.

In the legal industry at large, traditional family-run law firms, which have long dominated the local market, face increasing pressure from regional players, most notably Ferrere, which has its origins in Uruguay. Concurrently, a number of corporate firms are putting increasing emphasis on institutionalisation with corporate and banking heavyweight Estudio Jurídico Gross Brown being the prime example of this trend. On another front, the amicable division of the renowned Vouga & Olmedo has not caused a major disruption in the market, as both had been working with a degree of independence even before the formal split.

In the labour and employment sector, Irún & Villamayor Asesores Laborales de Empresa remains the indisputable master; while in tax Mersán Abogados retains a leading position but is facing increasing competition; notably with the growth of specialised boutique Estudio Nora Ruoti & Asociados.

Press releases

The latest news direct from law firms. If you would like to submit press releases for your firm, send an email request to

Legal Developments worldwide

Legal Developments and updates from the leading lawyers in each jurisdiction. To contribute, send an email request to
  • Anti-Money Laundering Update - Cyprus

    First uploaded on the International Bar Association's Anti-Money Laundering website.
  • Austria: Extension of the threshold regulation until the year 2016

    The "threshold regulation" adjusting (raising) the sub-thresholds of the Austrian Procurement Act ("BVergG") will be extended once again, namely for two more years. This plan was disclosed in the press briefing issued in conjunction with the retreat held by the members of Austria's federal government on September 27th and 28th this year. Thus, contracting authorities will continue to be able to benefit from substantial procedural simplifications when awarding contracts below the threshold in 2015 and 2016 as well. read more...
  • Serbia: Insolvency Act Amendments adopted

    As of 13 August 2014, the amendments and supplements to the Insolvency Act [Zakon o stečaju] are in force, published in the Official Gazette of RS no. 83/2014 ("New IA"). The New IA shall not be implemented retroactively, and those insolvency proceedings that were ongoing on the day the New IA entered into force will be continued under the previously valid rules. read more...
  • Hungary: New advertising tax feels like a bucket

    Hungary's new advertising tax, which has been introduced effective as of 15 August 2014, affects not only media companies, online and offline content providers and advertising agencies (media companies), but may also affect regular manufacturing and trading companies active in various industry segments (commercial companies). read more...
  • Voluntary ex ante transparency notice does not provide a clean bill of health...

    The ECJ has ruled that the so-called "voluntary  ex ante  transparency notice" under certain circumstances does not preclude review authorities from declaring a contract ineffective if it was awarded without prior publication of a contract notice. Moreover, the ECJ ruled that review authorities must declare a contract ineffective if the contracting authority could not legitimately hold that that the conditions for directly awarding the contract were in fact satisfied (ECJ 11.09.2014, Case C-19/13 Fastweb SpA ). read more...
  • Austria / EU: Latest EU Sanctions against Russia

    After introducing the "sectoral sanctions" against Russia on 1 August 2014 (see our  Legal Insight of 1 August 2014 ), the sanctions regime has been tightened further on September 12 as set out in EC Regulation No 960/2014. read more...
  • Austria: Judgment sheds light on joint ventures under the country’s merger control*

    Austrian merger control continues to capture non-full-function joint ventures. Joint ventures covered by merger control are sheltered against parallel assessment under the Austrian rules against anticompetitive agreements (no dual control). read more...
  • Czech Republic: Mergers, or thick red lines?

    In its decision no. 29 Cdo 3068/2013 dated 19 June 2014, the Supreme Court of the Czech Republic ("SCCR") once again ruled on the issue of the irreversibility of the legal effects of registration of transformation in the Czech Commercial Register. read more...
  • Hosting service providers at gunpoint of the financial "sharks"

    Can you fully control the Internet?
  • Financial Services & Regulatory Autumn Update 2014

    In this Update, we look at some valuable lessons learned for all financial services businesses from recent JFSC examinations and investigations, as well as amendments to the Companies (Jersey) Law.    Read more...

Press Releases worldwide

The latest news direct from law firms. If you would like to submit press releases for your firm, send an email request to