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Freshfields to provide pro bono legal advice to Ukraine on the creation of the Ukraine Development Fund

Global law firm Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer (‘Freshfields’) has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to provide pro bono legal advice to the Ministry of Economy of Ukraine as it establishes a development fund to attract public and private sector capital for the future reconstruction and recovery of its economy.

The fund, which will be launched with the advisory support of BlackRock Financial Markets Advisory, will be designed to provide a path for both domestic and international public and private investors to assist Ukraine with financing its post-war development efforts across infrastructure, energy, agriculture and other key areas.

Under the MoU, Freshfields will also support the Ministry on the further development of an investor-friendly legal climate.

Freshfields corporate partner Seb Lawson, who will be leading the firm’s multi-practice team on the project, recently commenced a two-year secondment to NGO Safe Ukraine 2030 to work exclusively on pro bono legal projects to support the post-war reconstruction of Ukraine. In addition to his work with the Ministry, he is also involved in a newly established corporate twinning programme, which will link Ukrainian businesses with international counterparts.

Freshfields senior partner Georgia Dawson said: “We’re proud to work alongside the Ukrainian government as it looks to its future beyond the current crisis. As part of the firm’s ongoing commitment to Ukraine, the creation of this development fund will make a significant difference to the country’s post-war reconstruction to the ultimate benefit of the Ukrainian people.”

Lawson said: “The efforts underway to assist Ukraine in financing its future recovery is challenging but vital work. I look forward to supporting these efforts, alongside other international partners, to deliver on the ground where it matters.”

Over the last year, Freshfields’ colleagues performed more than 75,000 hours of pro bono client work globally for a range of clients, from individual asylum seekers to leading global charities. Other related pro bono matters undertaken by Freshfields included advising Save the Children International on a range of mandates relating to their response to the Ukraine crisis.