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King & Spalding obtains foreign law license in Saudi Arabia

14 December 2023

King & Spalding obtains foreign law license in Saudi Arabia

King & Spalding has been granted a foreign law license by Saudi Arabia’s Ministry of Justice, paving the way to expand its work for clients in Saudi Arabia since establishing an affiliation in early 2007.

The license follows recent developments by the Saudi Arabian government allowing foreign law firms to officially operate in the country. The firm previously has been operating in the Kingdom in cooperation with the Law Offices of Mohammed AlAmmar, which will continue to operate as a separate firm.

 “We are committed to growing our presence in the Kingdom and the new license is an exciting and significant step for the firm,” said Robert D. Hays, chairman of King & Spalding in Atlanta. “We have been active in advising on outbound and inbound Middle East work for decades, having first established presences in the region in 2007 and 2008. The new Saudi license is a natural evolution that further aligns and integrates our practice. We thank the Ministry of Justice, the Ministry of Investment and the Ministry of Commerce for their guidance through the licensing process.”

Through this newly approved entity, King & Spalding’s lawyers in Riyadh will continue to partner with their colleagues in Dubai and Abu Dhabi, as well as the firm’s 20 other offices around the world, to help clients navigate corporate and M&A matters, funds, financings, restructurings, real estate, energy and infrastructure projects and a wide range of disputes in the Kingdom. Recent notable work includes acting for:

“We have been involved in many of the region’s landmark deals, including recent pathfinder work in areas such as energy transition, REITs and insolvency. As we look to the next chapter, we have recruited multiple Saudi national lawyers to our Riyadh office, as well as to our New York and London offices to undergo specialized training prior to returning to Riyadh. We are also establishing a local trainee programme to help develop the next generation of Saudi lawyers,” said Dubai-based Nabil Issa, managing partner of King & Spalding’s Middle East offices. “This development positions us perfectly to build on our strong platform, expand into new areas of law and continue to offer high-end legal services for our clients’ most sophisticated transactional, regulatory and disputes matters. In addition, we thank Mohammed AlAmmar and we wish him much success as we transition from our affiliation of more than 16 years.”

In addition to the Saudi lawyers, Martin Hunt, a current King & Spalding partner, will transfer to Riyadh from the London office and will continue to focus on M&A matters in Saudi Arabia as well as representing regional clients on their global investments.

“This license comes at an ideal time as Saudi Arabia’s Vision 2030 programme of investments begins to gather pace and we continue to ramp up both our inbound and outbound work related to the Kingdom,” added Zaid Al-Farisi, partner based in Riyadh.

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