Ireland has signaled its intention to become an attractive forum for dispute resolution post-Brexit by signing up to an Irish law version of an international agreement surrounding derivative disputes.

Users of the International Swaps and Derivatives Association (ISDA) Master Agreement can now choose Irish law to govern their derivatives contracts and the Irish courts to determine related disputes.

Ireland’s justice minister David Stanton, together with the ISDA and Irish firm McCann FitzGerald, officially welcomed the introduction of the agreement yesterday. The Fine Gael politician said: ‘This is a tremendous vote of confidence not just in Ireland but in Irish law and in the Irish courts system.’

He added: ‘The decision will also help boost Ireland’s profile and stimulate an increased acceptance by the international finance and business community of Irish law as a governing law of choice for cross-border transactions and legal dispute resolution.’

According to a statement announcing the agreement, users can benefit from automatic recognition and enforcement throughout the EU and will be attracted to the system given Ireland’s post-Brexit status as the largest common law jurisdiction in the EU. To date, derivatives contracts have primarily been governed by the laws of either England or the State of New York in the US.

Scott O’Malia, CEO of ISDA said while it could not predict the outcome of Brexit with certainty it was preparing for possible outcomes. ’The launch of the new master agreements is intended to provide additional options to users, so they can trade under whatever agreement best meets their needs,’ he added.

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