Legal advice in demand

The demand for legal advice and commercial arbitration is expected to soar over the next few months as the construction industry battles numerous challenges.

Demand for commercial arbitration is on the rise as the construction industry grows and the UAE's legal frameworks improve.
Demand for commercial arbitration is on the rise as the construction industry grows and the UAE's legal frameworks improve.

The demand for legal advice and commercial arbitration is expected to soar over the next few months as the construction industry battles numerous challenges.

Labour shortages and the increasing cost of materials have continued to plague the regional construction industry, leading to a rise in contract breaches and companies failing to deliver projects on time. The situation has prompted the need for speedy legal advice and methods of solving disputes.

"The need for commercial arbitration has never been more important here than it is now," said Dr Hussam Talhuni, director, Dubai International Arbitration Centre (DIAC).

c"Companies are struggling to make the most of their resources, with many ending up in situations that need legal assistance. And since time is money, the best option available to them is commercial arbitration.

An average court proceeding takes several years before a decision is reached while through arbitration, the case could be resolved within six months.

"Also, the new laws in international commercial arbitration that have been adopted by the UAE are on par with international standards and make legal proceedings much quicker and so much more comfortable," added Talhuni.

Edward Sunna, head of construction and engineering at legal firm Al Tamimi and Company, agreed that the current situation in the market will see a rise in demand for legal services.

"With so much at stake in such a bouyant market, it's only natural for investors and businessmen alike to feel the need to protect and equip themselves with legal knowledge within the industry.

DIAC will have its first roundtable discussion on the development and implementation of commercial arbitration on 16 April 2008 at the Dubai Chamber of Commerce & Industry's headquarters in Deira.

The interactive discussion is aimed at anyone with an interest in arbitration and will be simultaneously translated in Arabic and English.

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