Two of the biggest challenges law firms can face when working abroad are bureaucracy and corruption, according to Inês Albuquerque e Castro, a partner at FCB Sociedade de Advogados.
She adds: “We need to have local partners and people on the ground to solve those problems, working with partners that can provide the client with the same standard of work that they are used to.”
Albuquerque e Castro says that the ability to provide a multi-jurisdictional service is very important to clients and is one of their main requirements when choosing a law firm. “We must be able to provide services in new markets and in new sectors of activity,” she adds.
Given their cultural and linguistic similarity to Portugal, Angola and Mozambique remain the priority for Portuguese law firms with regard to their international expansion plans, Albuquerque e Castro says. “They are two very healthy markets, and we believe it is important to have a presence there because the clients are there,” she says. “We must therefore adjust and adapt our way of working to this new reality,” Albuquerque e Castro adds.