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Brexit hitting London’s Commercial Court
Pic: Shutterstock

22 May 2020 / brexit Print

Brexit hitting London’s Commercial Court?

There are signs that Brexit may be having an effect on the Commercial Court in London, which handles UK and international business disputes.

The number of cases heard there has dipped this year after five years of growth, according to the UK Gazette.


It quoted a report from litigation consultancy Portland as showing that 198 cases were heard in the commercial courts between April 2019 and March 2020, 9% fewer than last year.

Litigants from countries in the EU made up 13.6% of all litigants, down from 16.5% two years ago. In contrast, the number from Kazakhstan and Singapore has risen almost threefold since 2018/19.

UK litigants accounted for 45% of total commercial court users, with high numbers coming from Kazakhstan, Russia, the USA, Cyprus and Singapore.


Dr Giesela Rühl, professor of law at the University of Jena, told the UK Gazette it was too early to tell whether the decline in EU litigants since 2017 marks the beginning of a trend.

She added, however, that Brexit was likely to have an effect on judicial cooperation in civil and commercial matters, while other EU countries had recently created new international commercial courts and court chambers to make their systems more attractive for international commercial litigants.

Gazette Desk
Gazette.ie is the daily legal news site of the Law Society of Ireland