Alec moved initially into the disputes sector on joining Clyde & Co in 1977, having previously spent five years handling corporate insolvencies. He managed the Hong Kong office from 1984 onwards, handling headline cases such as the Carrian fraud and many 'phantom' ship frauds. Alex also handled numerous arbitrations, investment dispute, disaster and commercial contract litigations, and was well-known in most areas of insurance dispute resolution. He returned to London in 1996 and then moved to the Dubai office in 1999 as head of the dispute resolution group, where he continues to practise in the same areas. He retired early as a partner in mid-2008 to work as an independent arbitrator and as a consultant for the firm actiing for clients in complex disputes including ADCCAC, DIAC, DIFC-LCIA, ICC, LCIA, LMAA, SCMA and SIAC disputes. He sits as an arbitrator in a wide range of disputes under most of these institutions' rules as well as in UNCITRAL and other ad hoc arbitrations.

Alec provides his expertise to teams in the firm handling a wide range of arbitrations.

Alec was listed as a leading individual in the 2009 to 2014 International Who's Who of Commercial Arbitration. The firm is ranked amongst the top global arbitration practices by GAR. Chambers Global Rankings said "Alex Emmerson sets the bar high for the rest of the lawyers in this field. He is widely respected as an advocate and an arbitrator, and is one of the most switched-on, pragmatic and effective lawyers in the region." In 2011 Chambers described Alex as a "disputes czar..." and "one of the most acclaimed, trusted and respected names in the market". He is also recognised in many other directories and as a highly recommended individual for the UAE, in PLC Which Lawyer in the field of Dispute Resolution.

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