Legal market overview
Peru remains one of the more buoyant economies in Latin America, despite the country’s GDP growth settling at around 5%, down from the heady 6-9% experienced in previous years but still sufficient to outstrip its neighbours. The current rate is still double the Latin American average. A stable government and an increasingly reliable administration makes Peru an attractive destination for international companies and foreign investment, particularly in the extractive sectors, which account for more than 60% of Peru’s total exports. Efforts to strengthen the knowledge-based sectors and sound economic fundamentals have made the world’s third largest copper and zinc producer more resilient to external shocks. However, ongoing disputes with local communities have had a negative impact on the continuation of a number of mining projects. Poor infrastructure also remains a consistent problem, although the government plans to combat this deficit with $20.5bn of investment by 2016. This year’s planned integration of the Mexican Stock Exchange into MILA (the integrated Latin American Stock Market), will make it Latin America’s largest bourse by capitalisation ($1tr) and should further encourage a positive investment environment in member nations Chile, Colombia, Mexico and Peru.
The legal market has become accustomed to Baker & Mckenzie’s presence in the market (local powerhouse Estudio Echecopar was, after all, already well-established as a leading firm). To date, besides Garrigues as yet small scale arrival in Lima, the legal market has not experienced a wave of arrivals such as both Colombia and Mexico have endured in recent years. As such the market remains dominated by a number of sizeable, full-service firms, first and foremost, Miranda & Amado Abogados and Rodrigo, Elías & Medrano, Abogados, very closely followed by Estudio Echecopar, a member firm of Baker & McKenzie International, Muñiz, Ramírez, Pérez-Taiman & Olaya Abogados and Rubio Leguía Normand. Also of note are punchy and dynamic mid-sized firms such as Estudio Ferrero Abogados, Hernández & Cía. Abogados, Payet, Rey, Cauvi, Pérez & Mur and Rebaza, Alcázar & De Las Casas Abogados Financieros; as is Lazo, De Romaña & Gagliuffi Abogados, which is gradually gaining increasing market presence. Which is not to say that boutiques no longer have a place: Bullard Falla Ezcurra Abogados remains go-to on competition matters; Laub & Quijandría is impressive on energy matters in general and Santiváñez Abogados on electricity in particular; also noteworthy is Delapuente in the environmental sector, Estudio González & Asociados for labour matters, Barreda Moller for IP and Estudio De la Flor, García Montufar Arata & Asociados for real estate.