Never mind the City's financial sector – Lord Mayor says the UK's legal industry will carry the country through Brexit

Lucy White
Sir Hartley Shawcross
The Lord Mayor said England's legal industry was "pre-eminent" (Source: Getty)

The City of London's Lord Mayor, Andrew Parmley, will tonight tell the judiciary that it will be the legal profession which carries the UK through Brexit.

Speaking at the annual Dinner to Her Majesty's Judges at Mansion House, Parmley is expected to say that “shockwaves” are still being felt from last year's European referendum.

He will also note that there are differences of opinion across the country, and ambiguity over the terms of the UK's future “commercial and social” relationships.

Read more: The UK legal sector is vital to the City’s international success

“We cannot deny that, for now, there is uncertainty. But of one thing we can be certain: the pre-eminent position of English law, UK courts and British legal services,” Parmley will say.

He will list three reasons for this, including the “incorruptible” nature of the judiciary, the “outstanding quality, certainty and flexibility” of English law and the leadership of London in international dispute resolution.

Parmley will add: “It is in our national interest to heed a sector held in the highest global esteem and deference.”

Read more: City of London Lord Mayor Andrew Parmley will today warn the Square Mile must "help shape our negotiations with the EU"

The speech comes as the new Business and Property Courts were launched last night, the updated name for England and Wales' international dispute resolution jurisdictions.

It will encompass a number of specialist High Court courts and lists, including the Commercial Court, the Technology and Construction Court, and the courts of the Chancery Division.

Last night's London launch, in the Rolls Building, was the first in a series of roll-outs across the country.

The new arrangement is designed to improve the connection between the courts in London and in other regions of the UK, allowing for more flexible deployment of judges with the relevant expertise.

“When the Business and Property Courts go live on 2 October, the specialist jurisdictions of our courts will all be using names that national and international business people can readily understand,” said Sir Geoffrey Vos, chancellor of the High Court of England and Wales.

Read more: Supreme Court president Lord Neuberger says judges will keep listening to European Court of Justice decisions post-Brexit

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