fair deal sierra leone - Developing Markets Associates

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fair deal sierra leone - Developing Markets Associates
“FAIR DEAL SIERRA LEONE”
A LEGAL PRO BONO INITIATIVE
25 FEBRUARY 2016
Gavin Williams, Partner, +44 20 7466 2153, [email protected]
FAIR DEAL SIERRA LEONE
What is Fair Deal Sierra Leone?
Responding to the Ebola outbreak
The City Ebola Taskforce
Sierra Leone: An Investor’s Guide
Looking to the Future
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WHAT IS FAIR DEAL SIERRA LEONE?
WHAT IS FAIR DEAL SIERRA LEONE?
• Established in 2010, it is the first large-scale pro bono
facility offered by a law firm in support of one country's
development efforts
• Uses HSF’s international and cross-practice
experience to deliver free expert legal support to the
Government of Sierra Leone (GoSL) in negotiating
agreements with international investors
• Includes policy and legislative advice, contract review,
deal negotiation support, assistance on disputes and
secondments of lawyers to the GoSL in Freetown
• Over £2 million worth of free legal advice provided by
over 100 HSF lawyers, including recent work on the
commercial implications of the Ebola outbreak
“Our governments need
help getting the best deal.
As president, it is
disheartening to get to the
negotiating table and find
yourself confronted by a
phalanx of lawyers and
accountants on one side
of the table outnumbering
your own side ten to one.”
President Ernest Bai
Koroma, 2012
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THE PRE-EBOLA LANDSCAPE
A GROWTH STORY
THE PRE-EBOLA LANDSCAPE
• Prior to the outbreak of the Ebola virus, Sierra Leone was among
the top 20 fastest-growing economies in the world, with real GDP
growth of approximately 20 per cent
• Efforts to strengthen and reform government institutions and
capacity-building to encourage private sector growth were underway
through the Agenda for Change
• Energy, infrastructure and mining in particular were attracting
investment, while agriculture and fisheries remained prime
investment opportunities
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EBOLA OUTBREAK
LEGAL RESPONSE
EBOLA OUTBREAK RESPONSE
• The Ebola epidemic in 2014 led to a 18-month battle with the disease.
Sierra Leone was one of the hardest-hit countries
• 30 July 2014 - President of Sierra Leone declared a state of emergency
• Contractors, consultants and other counterparties quickly requested
permission to suspend the provision of their services or contracts with the
GoSL due to the outbreak
• HSF assembled a team from across our offices to advise on:
•
the overall legal response to the situation; and
•
the provisions of specific contracts
• HSF advised on the rights of contractors to invoke “force majeure”,
material adverse change clauses and related issues
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THE CITY EBOLA TASKFORCE
A NETWORK OF EXPERTISE
THE UK CITY EBOLA TASKFORCE
• Formed after a private sector briefing • Harnessed each member’s resources,
by the UK Foreign and Commonwealth
networks and expertise to provide the
Office (FCO) on its actions to support
most effective assistance possible in
the government of Sierra Leone during
the face of the Ebola crisis
the Ebola crisis
• HSF has also co-founded the UK
• Comprises Herbert Smith Freehills,
Sierra Leone Pro Bono Network, an
Standard Chartered Bank, Prudential,
umbrella network for UK legal
Deloitte, KPMG, Friends Life, The City
professionals and organisations
UK and The London Stock Exchange
providing pro bono legal assistance to
Sierra Leone
• Led the development of the recentlypublished Sierra Leone Investor’s
Guide
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SIERRA LEONE: AN INVESTOR’S GUIDE
A PRIVATE SECTOR PERSPECTIVE
SIERRA LEONE: AN INVESTOR’S GUIDE
• An independent, private sector view on the
current investment climate in Sierra Leone
• Provides context to potential investors
• Written by HSF, with input of Standard
Chartered Bank
• Produced with the support of Prudential and
Standard Chartered Bank
• Supported by DFID, the FCO, the United
Nations and the Sierra Leone Export
Promotion Agency (SLIEPA)
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SIERRA LEONE: AN INVESTOR’S GUIDE
• 38 HSF volunteers spent over 700 hours
on a pro bono basis drafting and editing
the Guide
• Launched by the President Ernest Bai
Koroma at the UN Pledging Conference
in New York in July 2015
• Upon invitation by the Dutch Government,
presented at the Back to Growth:
Investing in Guinea, Liberia and Sierra
Leone investment forum in the Hague in
November 2015
• Presented at the Sierra Leone Chamber
of Commerce Trade Fair in Freetown in
December 2015
Investor’s Guide launch at the United Nations in July
2015 - L-R: Raymond Gbekie (CEO, SLIEPA), Oluniyi
Robbin Coker (Chairman of SLIEPA), Mabinty Daramy
(Minister of Trade), President Ernest Bai Koroma
(President of the Republic of Sierra Leone), Rebecca
Perlman (Herbert Smith Freehills) and Gavin Williams
(Herbert Smith Freehills)
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LOOKING TO THE FUTURE
IMPROVING THE INVESTMENT LANDSCAPE
LOOKING TO THE FUTURE
• Sierra Leone was declared Ebola-free in November 2015, although
two further cases were confirmed in January 2016
• Increased political will for reform with the aim of encouraging inward
investment, and Post-Ebola Recovery Strategy prioritises private
sector-led growth
• Key reform plans include:
• Enhancing transparency
• Centralising fiscal and non-fiscal regimes into a single,
accessible investment code
• Agribusiness investment framework reforms
• Standardising processes across the GoSL, including model
form documents for tenders and deal negotiations
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