Martin Solc ,President of International Bar Association(IBA)

Martin Solc is the new President of the International Bar Association (IBA) and the first person from the Czech Republic to assume the role in the Association’s 70 year history. His tenure will run for two years, from 1 January 2017 to 31 December 2018

A founding partner of the law firm Kocián Solc Balastík in Prague, Mr Solc commented: ‘It is with enormous pride and a great sense of responsibility that I have taken up the position of President of the International Bar Association and I intend to build on the good and important work of my predecessors, the most recent being David W Rivkin. Thinking back to the spring of 1990 when I attended my first IBA meeting, I did not envisage that one day I would have the privilege of presiding over this august body. However, what I did know was that I respected enormously the work of the Association and its members’ dedication to its founding principles, particularly the underpinning ethos to bring together people from across continents regardless of heritage, religion or ideology. I knew then quite certainly that I would be a life-long member of the IBA and would contribute as best I could to this unique organisation.’

Prior to assuming the presidency Mr Solc held many senior positions in the IBA, including Vice-President (2015-2016), Secretary-General (2013-2014), Co-Chair of the International Bar Association’s Human Rights Institute (2009-2010) and Chair of the Public and Professional Interest Division (2007-2008). He has been a member of the IBA Management Board since 2003 and a member of the IBA for more than a quarter of a century, initially representing the Czech Bar Association on the IBA Council. He held the presidency of the Czech Bar Association in 1994 and was a member of its Management Board from 1990-2002.

In an opinion poll conducted by the prominent Czech legal commentary website, Mr Solc was voted ‘Most Respected Lawyer’ in the Czech Republic in 2015, and in a competition organised by the Czech Bar Association and under the auspices of the Czech Ministry of Justice and other legal professional bodies of the Czech Republic, he was elected ‘Lawyer of the Year in Commercial Law’ in 2011 and 2007. Also, the international legal rating directory Chambers Europe describes him as one of the leading mergers and acquisitions (M&A) lawyers in the Czech Republic, with the Legal 500 index classing him as a leading Czech expert in corporate law, M&A and restructuring.

In his new role, Mr Solc outlined how he intends to conduct his presidency and the key issues on which he will focus: ‘I aim to serve not only IBA members during my term, but the global legal profession in general. The world is always in flux, but presently it seems to me – more so than in times past – that there is a pressing need to promote and protect the rule of law and guard hard-won liberties. Also, there are a number of issues shaping our world adversely that need to be addressed by legal professionals across the globe, including: growing divisiveness; the rising tide of populist movements, particularly in the United States and Europe; corruption; cybersecurity ; and inequality between genders, generations and lineage. With regard to these issues, I believe that the role of the IBA is to deepen the general understanding of the importance of the values that make for more equal societies, to contribute towards closing the disparities that exist and to cultivate a culture of greater inclusivity. ‘

He added: ‘Also, the future of legal services is changing dramatically, partially as a result of advancements in technology. Change is inevitable, and it is essential that lawyers, law firms and bar associations prepare for it and stay abreast of technological developments. In this respect, the IBA will assist through a number of initiatives. Certainly, there is much work to be done, but I am looking forward to working with IBA Officers and committee members to meet the challenge!’


Other appointments of the IBA Management Board are:

Vice President Horacio Bernardes-Neto, Brazil

Secretary General Jim Klotz, Canada

LPD Chair Jaime Carey, Chile

LPD Vice-Chair Jon Grouf , USA

IBA Treasurer/LPD Secretary Treasurer Peter Bartlett, Australia

IBA Asst Treasurer/LPD Asst Treasurer Carola van den Bruinhorst, Hong Kong SAR

LPD Representatives

– Almudena Arpón de Mendívil, Spain

– Daniel Del Río, Mexico

– Gianmatteo Nunziante, Italy

SPPI Chair Stephen Denyer, England

SPPI Secretary Treasurer Sarah Hutchinson, England

BIC Chair Claudio Visco, Australia

BIC Vice-Chair Péter Köves, Hungary

BIC Immediate Past Chair Margery Nicoll, Australia

Bar Association Representative Chunghwan Choi, South Korea

From IBA Press office

1 thought on “Martin Solc is the new President of the International Bar Association (IBA)

  1. Congratulation to Mr. Martin Solc for being elected President of IBA with a lot of experiences in the legal professions and I would much suggested that your term of office you should at least an African executive member in the management of IBA.
    I am an Advocate in South Sudan and member of Pan African Lawyers Union(PALU) I would much more appreciates and try to make sure lawyers in the region of Eastern Africa join the association and for more discussion you can send me email.


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