Bar Council and Law Society welcome Government legal services export drive

14 March 2013

The Bar Council, which represents barristers in England and Wales, and the Law Society, which represents solicitors in England and Wales, have welcomed the Government's action plan, UK Legal Services on the International Stage: Underpinning Growth and Stability.

The plan, launched on Thursday 14 March 2013, by the Lord Chancellor, sets out a blueprint for promoting UK legal services internationally.

The UK legal services market is worth £26.8bn and employs up to 320,000 people in England and Wales alone. It contributes a net £3bn to the UK's balance of trade.

Chairman of the Bar, Maura McGowan QC, said:

"The Bar Council is committed to working with the Government to promote the value of the legal services sector. In this jurisdiction we have Judges and practitioners, renowned for their integrity, skill and expertise, who are respected all over the world. Our support of, and adherence to, the Rule of Law is something of which we are justifiably very proud.

"We welcome the Government's interest in exporting English law and seeking to create an environment in which the Bar, which is largely made up of self-employed professionals, can flourish.

"We look forward to working with our colleagues at the Law Society to represent the profession as a whole and to take this plan forward."

Click  here to read Maura McGowan QC's full speech.

Law Society deputy vice president, Andrew Caplen said:

"The Law Society welcomes the commitment of the Government and the Lord Chancellor in championing the legal sector. By working together with the Government, the Bar Council and others with an interest in promoting professional services, we can help secure a greater share of the global legal services market.

"For the global economy to recover from the worst crisis in many years, trade and investment are central to re-generating strong, sustainable and balanced growth in the UK and overseas. This cannot be done without solicitors.

"Our solicitors are already developing wider networks and relations with firms overseas, internationalising their operations, and taking advantage of the benefits of English law to assist their clients, whoever they are and wherever they are. London has a central role in advising businesses in emerging markets as they continue to drive global recovery."


Notes to editors:

1.  For further information, please contact the   Bar Council Press Office on 020 7222 2525 or

2. Click here to read Maura McGowan QC's speech.

3.  The Bar Council represents barristers in England and Wales. It promotes:

• The Bar's high quality specialist advocacy and advisory services

• Fair access to justice for all

• The highest standards of ethics, equality and diversity across the profession, and

• The development of business opportunities for barristers at home and abroad.

The General Council of the Bar is the Approved Regulator of the Bar of England and Wales. It discharges its regulatory functions through the independent Bar Standards Board  .


About the Law Society

The Law Society is the independent professional body, established for solicitors in 1825, that works globally to support and represent its members, promoting the highest professional standards and the rule of law.

Press contact

Emma Alatalo

Assistant Press Officer

+44 (0)20 7316 5592