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Promising 2013? Still too early to say, but one will be forced to admit that these first three months of the year have been pretty hectic in various respects: the return of Germany to economic growth, the death of the controversial leader of the richest country in terms of natural oil reserves (i.e. Venezuela), the Swiss vote on a limitation of CEO salaries, the death of the most famous “indigné”, Stéphane Hessel, in France and very recently the resignation of the catholic leader and the consequent election of a new pope... and this is only on the political and economic side!
I recently heard someone saying “lawyers will always have opportunities to find work whatever the economic climate and the political context”. This is, without a doubt, due to the tendency of our modern society to rule every aspect of our lives. These last five years of intense legal activity despite a never-ending financial crisis have tended to confirm this statement. Thus, the nature of our engagements has changed over the years. We have had to restructure and sometimes liquidate the structures that we implemented in early 2000, but the volume of activity is still noticeable.
In these difficult times for Europe, the little Grand-Duchy which hosts most of the European institutions seems to skilfully surf on two contradictory waves: European harmonization on the one hand – this is notably the case for most of the EU-driven legislation on the banking sector or on investment funds which will be profitable for the Luxembourg financial industry – and singularization on the other hand – with its low VAT, its favourable intellectual property tax regime, the pragmatic business approach of its public administration, etc. The Grand-Duchy remains incredibly attractive compared with most European countries stuck in internal political discussions aiming to reduce constantly increasing national debts. This certainly explains why CMS DeBacker Luxembourg remains surprisingly confident in this agitated context and why our law specialists will continue to carry their professional activity through an international lens only.
If I had to quote it in a line, it would probably sound like “so far so good”… but we will see whether it continues this way, and the CMS newsletter will give us the opportunity to keep you freshly updated on the Luxembourg economic pulse all through the year.
Julien Leclère, CMS DeBacker Luxembourg
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