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Saudi Arabia

Editorial

Legal market overview

The Saudi Arabian market has generally slowed down due to the drop in oil prices, and many projects are on hold as the government is channelling more funds into defence investments due to concerns over the war in Yemen and regional instability. Despite the geopolitical tension, corporate activity continued unabated with healthcare and education being key targets of investment. Notably, the government made efforts to further liberalise the capital markets and open them to foreign investment. That said, the Capital Markets Authority (CMA) has recently been more selective regarding domestic applications for IPOs and has put on hold most.

Clifford Chance LLP and Clyde & Co are the first two law firms in the Kingdom to establish joint Saudi and foreign owned law partnerships. In other noteworthy developments, Law Firm of Hassan Mahassni In association with Dechert LLP’s association arrangement was formed in September 2015 and Mohammed Al-Jadaan left Al-Jadaan & Partners Law Firm after being appointed as the chairman of the CMA in January 2015. Law Firm of AlSalloum and AlToaimi in association with White & Case LLP is the new name of the US firm’s local alliance, following the cessation of relations with Waleed Al-Nuwaiser.

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