Geoeconomics in Court: The Rise of Economic Lawfare

Panel VI at Helsinki Geoeconomics Week 2024 takes a deep dive into the intricate world of economic lawfare, where legal systems become battlegrounds for geoeconomic competition.

“Geoeconomics in Court” examines how states and global businesses leverage and manipulate legal frameworks, both domestic and international, to advance their politico-economic agendas.

From strategic litigation for geoeconomic objectives to the complexities of georegulation and corporate lobbying to shape these regulations, this panel confronts the challenges firms face in this unpredictable and rule-bending game.

Discover strategies and insights for staying ahead in this high-stakes environment.

Join us for a riveting discussion on navigating a landscape where the rules are constantly shifting, and the goalposts are always moving. 


  • Legal Dimension of Geoeconomics: Addressing the legal dimension, this session examines the growing use of economic lawfare—using legal authority and regulatory frameworks as strategic tools for achieving power political goals.
  • Weaponization of the Law: Lawfare involves the ‘weaponization’ of laws and legal institutions by invoking legal arguments and appeals to legal authority in geostrategic contexts. The panel will delve into how countries and corporations use these strategies to gain influence and broader geopolitical objectives.
  • Key Cases of Lawfare: By analyzing recent trends, the discussion will highlight key cases where geoeconomic strategies have been pivotal. Examples include the use of sanctions, trade restrictions, and investment screenings to exert legal pressure and achieve desired outcomes in international and domestic courts.
  • Global Implications: The session will also explore the implications of economic lawfare on the global legal order, including how these practices impact international norms, sovereignty, and the balance of power.
  • Insights and Analysis: Through detailed case studies and expert analysis, attendees will gain insights into the mechanisms of economic lawfare, its effectiveness, and its consequences for international law and global governance.
  • Intersection of Disciplines: This panel will be essential for legal professionals, policymakers, and scholars interested in the intersection of law, economics, and international relations, providing a comprehensive understanding of how economic strategies are reshaping the legal landscape.


Maria Carlsson, Bird & Bird
Victor Ferguson, University of Tokyo
Klaus Ilmonen, Hannes Snellman & Hanken School of Economics
Malcolm Jorgensen, Max Planck Institute
Jens Hillebrand Pohl
, FIIA (chair)
Maria Shagina, IISS
Cindy Whang, Fu Jen Catholic University


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