The CIS and Russia in particular are one of the priority regions for the international business development efforts of the International Committee. The Committee has therefore been working for some time to develop opportunities for the Bar in Russia. On 13 and 14 July, a Bar Council delegation conducted a number of successful events in cooperation with the British Embassy in Moscow and UK Trade & Investment. In the evening of 13 July a high-level dinner was hosted by the Minister Counsellor in her residence for the delegation with the President of the Moscow City Bar, Dr Genry Reznik, being the guest of honour. This involved useful discussions about the regulation of the legal profession. The Chairman of the Bar has subsequently written to his Dr Reznik, offering further cooperation both on the level of professional ethics/discipline as well as substantive law initiatives with practitioners.

On 14 July the Bar Council delegation gave a seminar for Russian commercial lawyers and in-house counsel in the seminar room of the modern British Embassy building. The first session focussed on civil fraud and professional liability, issues of great relevance to the local profession. The second session looked at dispute resolution options in the context of the current financial crisis and explained inter alia the advantages of London as a centre of dispute resolution. This was followed by a successful networking reception for the around 100 Russian lawyers that had attended the seminar.

The International Committee intends to follow up on this event by inviting a delegation of Russian commercial lawyers to London next year, as well as with involving Russian lawyers in a conference on confiscation law.