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China's legislature updates laws

BEIJING, Aug. 27, China's top legislature Thursday agreed a legislation overhaul with the updating and revision of 141 provisions in 59 different laws.

  Most amendments focused on deleting outdated terms or clarifying them, as well as making certain provisions consistent with revised laws.

  Article 7 of the General Principle of the Civil Law of the People's Republic of China, which reads, "Civil activities shall have respect for social ethics and shall not harm the public interest, undermine state economic plans or disrupt social economic order," has had the expression "undermine state economic plans" deleted.

  The Standing Committee of the National People's Congress (NPC) agreed that "state economic plans" was redundant with China's transition from a planned to a market-oriented economy over the past three decades.

  In laws regarding fisheries, railways, urban real estate and electric power, the expression "requisition" has been changed into "levy".

  In China, "requisition" refers to the transfer of the right of use, while "levy" refers to the transfer of ownership from individuals or groups to the state.

  In many laws regarding mineral resources, wild life protection, frontier hygiene and quarantine, teachers, and civil aviation, references to specific articles of the Criminal Law have been altered to "according to relevant provisions of the Criminal Law".

The 10th session of the Standing Committee of the 11th NPC was held in Beijing from Monday to Thursday. At the ninth session held in June, eight laws and regulations were annulled.

Original Source: Xinhua
Source: lawinfochina

China Culture 0 Comment September 1, 2009, 10:10 am

Edward Lehman named leading Business Lawyer

Published: August 26, 2009

BEIJING CEdward Lehman, Managing Director of leading red circle law firm Lehman, Lee & Xu has been named as one of Who¨s Who leading Business Lawyers.
Lehman, who founded his form seventeen years ago has been consistently ranked among the top corporate and IP lawyers in the country for the last decade. ^Its an honor to be recognized in this category. As China continues to open up the legal market here gets more competitive. Its important to keep focus and remember that the client must always remain the central focus ̄ relays Lehman, a Chicago native who first came to China in 1987.

Who¨s Who Legal publishes a list annually of lawyers who are considered pre eminent experts in their field. The guide takes twelve months of intensive research with the winners being chosen through a careful vetting and peer review process. ^In China the names are traditionally from foreign firms with representative offices in the PRC ̄ states Lehman. ^I¨ve always been especially proud to be nominated as it shows that local firms are now matching the foreign firms in terms of expertise. ̄ Lehman has no doubt that one day the names will be made up almost exclusively of practitioners from local Chinese firms. ^Within the next decade there will be a sea change as local practitioners become more sophisticated ̄.

The guide, seen as a crucial tool for selecting and vetting practitioners in an increasingly crowded marketplace, is endorsed both by the International Bar Association and the International Section of the American Bar Association. ...

China News 0 Comment August 28, 2009, 5:47 pm


Edward E. Lehman was invited by CCTV 9 to speak on the recent release of the Bomber of Lockerbie Air Crash in the Dialogue Program on August 26, 2009. Please see the program at: http://english.cctv.com/program/e_dialogue/20090827/104761.shtml

Edward E. Lehman, Managing Director of Lehman, Lee & Xu, who has been working in China for over twenty years, has often been invited by various media to talk on issues about Chinese laws as well as international laws.

China Culture 0 Comment August 27, 2009, 5:10 pm


By Ding Qingfen (China Daily)

Updated: 2009-08-26 07:59

China's rise as the world largest exporter, though significant, does not mean Chinese exports will be of as high a quality as Germany's goods, experts said.

The Chinese government should seriously consider ways to improve the quality of goods for export and create more value-added products to strengthen its competitiveness, they said.

For the first time, China took the lead as the world's export champion, surpassing Germany by a minimal amount in the first half of the year.

A report released Tuesday by the World Trade Organization (WTO) shows that from January to June, China exported goods worth $521.7 billion. Germany, which has been the world's biggest exporter since 2003, exported goods worth $521.6 billion.

Despite the fact that Chinese exports have declined for nine months, "China's economic power is still rising, and excluding the exchange rate factor, China is expected to surpass Japan as the second-largest economy this year," said Cai Haitao, inspector of the Department of Policy Research under the Ministry of Commerce.

In late July, the WTO predicted China would pass Germany as the largest exporter in 2009.

The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development also said the ratio of China's foreign trade to global trade will increase from the current 8.7 percent to 10 percent when the global economy recovers.

"The figure is not surprising, thanks to the nation's growing economic strength. And the possibility is high that the momentum will continue," said Li Daokui, senior Chinese economist and director of the Economic and Management Institute of Tsinghua University.

But WTO chief economist Patrick Low said it was impossible to say which of the two nations would come out on top this year or in 2010.

"It's a very tight race," Reuters quoted Low as saying Tuesday.

"Obviously, the result will depend not only on what happens to export volumes, but what happens to exchange rates."

Last Tuesday, Germany's DIHK export association was quoted by AFP as saying that global demand for high-worth and high-priced products made in Germany had shrunk sharply during the economic crisis.

"Germany's trading partners are going more for cheaper products now," it said.

For China, the problem is still the quality and mix of exports.

"The Chinese economy has not benefited much from the exports. The biggest concern is the quality of exports," said Li.

Since late last year, trade protectionism against China has kept rising.

The nation has become a major target of trade remedy measures launched by developed nations, including the US and Europe, and developing nations, represented by India and Turkey.

From last October to this June, investigations concerning trade remedy measures against China were valued at $9.8 billion, rocketing up by 113 percent compared with the first three quarters of 2008.

"The question is, why it was all against China, not Germany?" said Li.

Germany has long enjoyed a good reputation for its high-tech and quality products. "Chinese exporters need to develop more value-added goods," said Li.

And Chinese exporters need to shift their focus to emerging markets, instead of the US and Europe, said Cai.

China's exports to the Middle East, East Europe, Africa and Latin America, respectively, accounted for 9.2, 3.7, 10.4 and 6.9 percent of their markets. But comparatively, the figure was 17 percent to 22 percent for the US and Europe.

The share of China's exports in the major 12 trade partners rose rapidly amid the economic recession.

According to the Customs, the market share climbed from 16.2 percent during the first quarter to 19.3 percent in early 2008. The 12 trade partners imported 75 percent of Chinese goods.

Although the global economy seems to have bottomed out, there is no sign that it will recover soon, which will force Chinese exporters to struggle for months.

"The global economy will experience low-speed growth for a long period of time," said Cai.

China Culture 0 Comment August 26, 2009, 10:09 am


Al Guo
Aug 25, 2009

A test of the judicial system at the grass-roots level - that is how the lawyer for eight Henan villagers, who were convicted of libelling the village's Communist Party chief, sees his clients' possible third trial, after their two previous appeals were upheld.
The Qinyang Intermediate People's Court still has to decide whether it will pursue another trial. Originally it sentenced the peasants, from Panyao village of Shanwangzhuang town, to prison terms ranging from one to two years in October.

However, in the first appeal, the Jiaozuo People's Court found those terms inappropriate and sent the case back to Qinyang for retrial. In the second trial in June, the Qinyang court increased sentences for four defendants and eliminated probation for three defendants considered guilty only of minor offences.

Li Huiqing , a Beijing-based lawyer who represents the eight peasants, said while the first Qinyang ruling was "wrong", the second was "dead wrong". A second appeal was filed in Jiaozuo; the court upheld it on August 5 and, yet again, sent the case back to Qinyang.

"I think everyone understands the case was tossed back for a retrial because the Qinyang court didn't have enough evidence to support the [original] libel verdict," Mr Li said. "But the court, without showing further evidence, simply added extra penalties to the original charges [the second time]."

The eight villagers were arrested for handing out fliers in March last year, accusing village party chief Wu Xiaobao of abusing his power and taking money from the village's public account.

Mr Li said Qinyang police had arrested the eight peasants and filed charges. But according to mainland libel laws, only the person harmed by the alleged libel has the right to take the case to court. In this case, Mr Li said, Qinyang police arrested the villagers on Mr Wu's behalf.

Apart from the issue of who is allowed to launch a libel case, the accusations were written only after the village office refused to detail how the public money had been spent.

"Even with a little speculation, the eight peasants made most of their remarks based on the truth they knew," Mr Li said. "I think it will be a sad day for China's judicial system if the [Qinyang] court chooses to stick to its wrong decisions even after all the evidence has twice shown they were wrong," he said.

Mr Li said that, in his opinion, even if the Qinyang court convicted the villagers, the Jiaozuo court would throw out the verdict yet again.

Source: South China Morning Post

China Culture 0 Comment August 25, 2009, 3:50 pm


(China Daily)

Updated: 2009-08-19 09:28

An outspoken Beijing lawyer has been arrested for tax evasion nearly three weeks after he was detained, his lawyer said Monday.

Xu Zhiyong, co-founder of Gongmeng, a legal assistance group, was taken from his home by security officers at dawn on July 29, according to a statement from Gongmeng.

Zhou Ze, Xu's lawyer, told China Daily Tuesday that Beijing prosecutors had approved a police application to arrest Xu for tax evasion.

Beijing municipal authorities ordered the closure of Gongmeng last month for not being "registered properly". Beijing tax authorities also sent a formal notice to the center last month, imposing a fine of 1.4 million yuan ($207,000) for evading taxes on funds received from overseas.

The notice of his arrest has been sent to Beijing University of Posts and Telecommunications, where Xu works as a professor.

An officer with the university's security department who declined to be named due to the sensitivity of the issue confirmed to China Daily that the school had received the notice, but would not give further details.

Press officers with the Beijing public security bureau and procuratorate said they have no information about Xu's arrest.

The arrest brings Xu's case closer to a possible trial, although officials have not made a firm decision to prosecute. If tried and found guilty, Xu faces a maximum penalty of seven years in jail, according to the Criminal Law.

But Zhou said he considers the charge improper as only intentional tax evasion or the refusal to pay taxes despite of government notification could result in a criminal punishment.

"Neither of these two conditions apply to Xu's case. He has never been informed of failing to pay tax before," Zhou said.

Xu is currently being kept at the Beijing detention house, Zhou said.

"I paid a visit to him last Friday and he looked fine," he said.

Zhou said that there is no need for others to associate the charge with speculation that the government is cracking down on Gongmeng.

"We will try to defend him for the charge of tax evasion and I hope people won't associate too much with it."

Xu, in his late 30s, gained national attention in 2003 when he took up the case of Sun Zhigang, a college graduate who died after being beaten in a penitentiary hospital in the southern province of Guangdong.

The case helped to bring about the abolition of such penitentiary hospitals used to hold migrants accused of not having the right documents.

The combination of legal casework and public advocacy used by Xu and his colleagues set an example for many subsequent campaigns.

In 2005, Xu registered the Gongmeng group. With other scholars and lawyers, Xu has been providing legal help to the country's disadvantaged groups, including some of the parents of children who fell ill after drinking contaminated milk powder last year.

Information about Xu has been blocked on the internet Tuesday as the search for "Xu Zhiyong (Chinese characters)"on Google.cn and Baidu, two major search engines, generated: "Your search results don't conform to related laws and policy".

Source: China Daily

China Culture 0 Comment August 20, 2009, 10:41 am


14 gangs busted, 100 arrested in triad crackdown in Chongqing

Choi Chi-yuk
Aug 14, 2009

Police in Chongqing have broken up 14 organised crime gangs and detained scores of local businessmen, including three well-known billionaires, for their involvement in triad activities, the municipal government said yesterday.

A total of 100 mobsters, including 19 triad bosses, were arrested during a 50-day assault on organised crime in China's biggest city.

Crime gangs have got out of control in the booming industrial municipality - home to more than 30 million people.

The crackdown coincides with the downfall of Wen Qiang - director of the Chongqing Justice Bureau and formerly deputy police chief for 16 years - who was put under internal party investigation last Saturday for his alleged connections to organised crime.

It also turns the spotlight on the dangerous combination of power, money and gangsters that has made organised crime part of everyday life in Chongqing.

"Among the detained suspects, many are local entrepreneurs and businessmen, including billionaires," government spokesman Zhou Bo said.

Han Deyun , a local lawyer and a National People's Congress deputy who was briefed earlier by the authorities about the case, said at least three local billionaires had been detained.

Mr Han said those detained were property tycoon Chen Mingliang , motorbike tycoon Gong Gangmo , and Li Qiang - a local people's congress deputy who was once considered "the richest man" in the city's Banan district.

All three had developed close ties with Wen Qiang over the years.

With so many business leaders involved, Mr Zhou said the local government had to take care that the crackdown did not trigger a massive wave of business closures.

"When our police have gone to freeze the assets and ill-gotten fortunes amassed by these people, we considered the impact on [legitimate] business. We've reserved some money to ensure the affected companies and factories will continue to operate and do not have to close down," he said.

At a press conference to announce the arrests, Mr Zhou was asked to confirm whether 200 property developers in the city had been detained. The spokesman sidestepped the question, stressing instead that the crackdown had the full backing of Chongqing people.

In an apparent attempt to calm local business people, who feared they might be targeted in the anti-triad operation, Chongqing's recently appointed police chief, Wang Lijun , had met 30 of them on July 31, said Mr Han, who was present at the meeting.

Mr Wang told the business people not to worry even though some of them had paid money in the past to the arrested gangsters.

The police chief said he understood that many businessmen were coerced by the gangsters into paying them money. He said they would not be punished for such actions and pledged to relieve some of them from the extortive loans they had with the crime gangs.
Mr Wang also pledged that Chongqing police would not use the crackdown to extort money from the business leaders.

"He told them that police would protect their investment and legitimate business," Mr Han said. "Mr Wang said `we won't throw you to the wolves after saving you from the mouth of a tiger'. The business leaders think Mr Wang is an upright police chief who is really going to get tough on gangsters."

Source: South China Morning Post

China Culture 0 Comment August 17, 2009, 9:57 am



Updated: 2009-08-13 13:35

China expressed "regret" Thursday over a World Trade Organization ruling against its regulations on the import and distribution of books and audio-visual products.

China regretted the decision by a WTO dispute panel to uphold a United States appeal about those regulations, said Yao Jian, spokesperson for the Ministry of Commerce.

"China has always fulfilled its obligations on market access for publications, and the channels for foreign publications, films and audio-visual products to enter the Chinese market are extremely open," said Yao.

His statement came after the panel officially distributed the report to WTO members on Wednesday.

"China will seriously evaluate the panel's report and does not rule out the possibility of appealing the ruling," he said.

Source: China Daily...

China News 0 Comment August 13, 2009, 5:50 pm


By Zhang Qi and Cui Xiaohuo (China Daily)

Updated: 2009-08-12 07:51

Nearly six weeks after being detained by the Shanghai State Security Bureau for suspected espionage activities, Shanghai procuratorate authorities have now formally arrested four Rio Tinto employees.

The four, including Australian executive Stern Hu, have been charged with infringing business secrets and bribery, the Xinhua News Agency reported yesterday.

The arrest came shortly after Hu received his second consular visit from Australian officials.

Australia's Foreign Minister, Stephen Smith, said in Canberra yesterday Hu, an Australian citizen, had contact with consular representatives but he did not elaborate.

Chinese legal experts said the case was "complicated" but insisted Hu had been treated in line with normal legal procedures.

Wang Minyuan, an expert on legal procedure at the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, told China Daily that police and prosecutors' dealings in the Rio Tinto case had been legal.

"China's criminal law of procedure stipulates that the police normally must arrest or release detainees within one month from the start of their detention. However, detention may be prolonged if prosecutors need to conduct additional investigation," he said.

The Criminal Procedural Law stipulates that prosecutors may apply for additional time for investigations up to twice, which would allow police to detain suspects for one additional month each time.

The same law stipulates that legal representation must be given to suspects if the case is connected to State secrets.

Rio Tinto, meanwhile, has moved employees out of its Shanghai office following the detention and arrest of Hu and the three others, said Sam Walsh, head of London-based Rio's iron ore unit, according to Bloomberg yesterday.

Walsh said some non-Chinese employees in Shanghai had moved to Singapore.

China is Australia's second-largest trading partner.

Source: China Daily

China Culture 0 Comment August 12, 2009, 9:42 am


By Lei Xiaoxun, Hu Yinan and Cai Ke (China Daily)
Updated: 2009-08-11 07:07

A China-bound Afghan plane diverted to Kandahar Sunday night after a bomb threat finally arrived at Urumqi, its scheduled destination, late last night.

Kam Air president Zamarai Kamgar, who was on the aircraft, told China Daily the entire incident "might have been a hoax". The airline's competitors might have been behind it, he said.

Kam Air is Afghanistan's first private airline. The state-owned Ariana Afghan Airlines is its primary competitor.

"I'm very confident about the Chinese market," Kamgar said, stressing that from the first week of September onwards, Kam Air will be flying Tuesdays from Kabul to Urumqi as well. Now the flight is only on Sundays.

"There was quite some confusion on the plane when we were told we had to go back," said Daud, a crew member on the flight.

"Then we realized that there couldn't be any threat; we did our best in security before the plane took off."

A source with the China Metallurgical Group Corp who flies regularly to Kabul said he shares those feelings.

"Security measures have always been super-tight. I'm guessing that this was just a trick by Ariana," he said.

The Boeing 767 flight arrived in the Afghan capital of Kabul, from which it had departed, early yesterday after an overnight stay in Kandahar, said Feda Mohammad Fedawi, deputy head of Kam Air.

Carrying 168 people, including five Chinese, the aircraft was earlier denied permission to land in Urumqi on Sunday and made an emergency landing in Kandahar during its return because "the weather condition in Kabul was very bad at that time", Kamgar said.

Pan Dongjie, a passenger on the plane, confirmed that the plane "made landing efforts in Kabul airport, but failed".

"Maybe it was because of strong winds," Pan said.

An official with Kabul International Airport, however, said the plane made the unexpected landing due to some "mechanical problem".

In Urumqi, an airport source said "the plane had descended to an altitude of about 2,000 m when it was informed by ground control that there were bombs on board and that it had to turn back".

Airport staff "received news of the bomb threat on Sunday night", according to the source. Pan, the passenger, also claims to have known about the bomb threat. But both Kamgar and Afghanistan's counterterrorism chief Abdul Manan Farahi said there was no bomb on the plane.

The airplane is scheduled to fly to Kabul from Urumqi at 10:30 am today.

Cui Jia, AP and Reuters contributed to the story...

China News 0 Comment August 11, 2009, 10:56 am


Wong Ka-chun
Aug 10, 2009

Greens Power Equipment (China) and China Longyuan Electric Power Corp plan to raise up to a combined HK$6 billion in Hong Kong initial public offerings as they take advantage of rising mainland demand for alternative energy projects.
Both offerings are planned to be completed before the end of the year and investment bank Morgan Stanley of the United States is the sole adviser for the two companies.

Market sources indicated Greens Power, the smaller of the two firms, could start its offering before China Longyuan.

Greens Power, founded in 2002 and based in Shanghai, was solely owned by Greens Power of Britain and was hoping to sell a stake of up to HK$1 billion for a listing on the main board in late September or early October, sources said.

Two other sources said China Longyuan aimed to raise at least HK$5 billion by the end of the year.

Greens Power offers a variety of environmentally friendly boilers and heat-transfer products for the power generation and petrochemical industries.

Green energy, or alternative energy, is considered to be non-polluting and includes electricity production by geothermal, wind, solar or hydropower methods, instead of the traditional use of coal.

The alternative energy sector on the mainland has attracted strong interest from institutional investors given its huge growth potential and is backed by policy support from the central government.

China Longyuan, the nation's largest producer of wind power, is believed to have lodged its listing application with the Hong Kong stock exchange.

The company is the renewable energy unit of China Guodian Corp, one of the five state-owned producers of electrical power. Last year, it accounted for more than 20 per cent of mainland wind-power producing capacity with power generation capacity of 2,630 megawatts.

China Longyuan boosted its generation capacity to 3,000 MW in the first half of the year and hopes to raise that to 6,000 MW next year.

Given the recent strong market sentiment and ample capital inflows, at least 10 companies are believed to be planning offerings in Hong Kong aiming to raise a combined HK$20 billion.

The H-share offering of China Metallurgical Group is the biggest issue among those planning a September offering. The company is thought to be aiming to raise HK$10 billion in Hong Kong as well as to tap the domestic market by selling US$1.4 billion worth of A shares on the Shanghai stock market.

Source: South China Morning Post...

China Culture 0 Comment August 10, 2009, 9:36 am



Updated: 2009-08-06 14:51

China will further enhance access in its service market and expand areas and channels for non-government investment, according to a fact sheet released in Beijing on Wednesday.

The move was aimed to expedite the development of its services industry and increase the share of services in GDP, said the economic track joint fact sheet of the first China-US Strategic and Economic Dialogue (S&ED).

In the fact sheet, the two countries agreed to take measures respectively to promote balanced and sustainable economic growth in their domestic economies both to ensure a strong recovery from the international financial crisis and to bring about more balanced and sustainable global economic growth after a global recovery is firmly established.

It said, firstly, both countries would enhance communication and the exchange of information regarding macroeconomic policy, and would work together to pursue policies of adjusting domestic demand and relative prices to lead to more sustainable and balanced trade and growth.

Secondly, both sides would also pursue forward-looking monetary policies with due regard for the ramifications of those policies for the international economy.

In addition, they would encourage new approaches to infrastructure financing to assist with economic recovery.

The fact sheet said the United States would take measures to increase national saving as a share of GDP.

"The US household saving rate has already risen sharply as a result of the crisis, contributing to a significant decline in the US current account deficit, and the United States will adopt policies that will continue to encourage household saving," it said.

The United States would also reform its health care system with the aim of controlling rising health care costs for businesses and government while assuring high-quality, affordable health care for all Americans, and was committed to reducing the federal budget deficit relative to GDP to a sustainable level by 2013.

As for China, the fact sheet said the country would continue to implement structural and macroeconomic policies to stimulate domestic demand and increase the contribution of consumption to GDP growth.

China would also deepen social safety net reform, including strengthening its basic old-age insurance system and enterprise annuities, it said.

The first S&ED was held in Washington, D.C. from July 27 to 28. The mechanism was jointly launched by Chinese President Hu Jintao and US President Obama during their meeting in April in London as a way to show elevation of the importance of China-US cooperation under the new historical circumstances.

Source: China Daily...

China Culture 0 Comment August 7, 2009, 3:45 pm



Updated: 2009-08-04 10:15

China's Ministry of Finance said Monday it is to continue subsidizing dairy companies' loan interest payments to the tune of 75 million yuan ($10.97 million), in a move to help them cut costs and protect the interests of dairy farmers.

The measure covers the interest on loans taken out by dairy companies to purchase raw milk from farms because of the melamine contamination scandal last year, the ministry said.

The ministry unveiled the subsidies policy in September 2008 following the contamination problems. It took effect from October to December last year, and was then extended into March this year. On July 27, the policy was further extended to year end to support dairy producers.

The subsidy covers 3.11 percentage points of the loan interest rate, the ministry said on July 27.

The country's dairy industry last year slumped after milk powder produced by Sanlu Group was contaminated by melamine, which killed six children and resulted in more than 300,000 becoming ill.

China News 0 Comment August 5, 2009, 9:39 am

More laws needed for Internet regulation

  The Internet in China needs to be administered by additoinal laws because what was once a virtual world is now a substantial part of the real one, a senior official has said.

  "The government should make efforts to strengthen the legislation of the Internet so it can be regulated effectively," Cai Mingzhao, vice-minister of the State Council Information Office, said at the UK-China Internet Roundtable meeting yesterday.

  The Chinese government has already set up a basic legal framework that regulates Internet information, tackles cyber crime and protects network security.

  Cai said the State must continually develop legislation to deal with new Internet-related issues as they arise, so the Internet can be managed.

  There are now 338 million Internet users in China - more than a quarter of the population. Some 181 million write blogs and the Internet is increasingly being seen as a "new channel" for public opinion. Bloggers have played an important role in busting corrupt officials and reporting incidents, such as the Urumqi riot.

  But the challenge of managing blogs and bloggers has become an important issue for the government, said Liu Zhengrong, deputy director of the Internet affairs bureau of the State Council.

  "Bloggers are prohibited from leaving 'harmful' or 'unhealthy' comments on the Internet, in order to protect the general public," Liu said. "Website administrators have responsibility to monitor and control the contents that are posted on their websites by bloggers."

"Harmful" and "unhealthy" information includes the spreading of rumors, slander, porn, gambling, violence, details of murder and terror and the instigating of crime.

Original source: China Daily
Source: LawInfoChina

China Culture 0 Comment July 29, 2009, 9:02 am


(China Daily)

Updated: 2009-07-27 09:47

An executive was beaten to death on Friday as 3,000 steel workers threatened with job cuts protested following the takeover of their company in Tonghua, Jilin province.

Jianlong Steel Holding Company representative Chen Guojun was killed at a facility run by Tonghua Iron and Steel Group, in northeast China's old industrial heartland.

The brawl broke out after Tonghua workers were told to expect job losses during a meeting with a delegation from Jianlong Steel, a privately owned firm based in Beijing.

It was the second time Jianlong had launched a takeover bid for the State giant and many feared the company planned to drain State assets before following up with cost-cutting measures, including redundancies.

"Employees (many of whom are shareholders) are close to enjoying financial gains as the price of steel continues to rise," said a police officer that identified herself only as Wang.

"Then, Chen disillusioned workers and provoked them by saying most of them would be laid off in three days.

"Chen, saying that a total number of 30,000 employees would be cut to 5,000, infuriated the crowd."

The angry steel workers beat Chen and then blocked ambulances, police and government officers from reaching him. He is believed to have died in the midst of the steel workers at 8 pm Friday.

"Chen, the manager, did not deserve to be killed. Unfortunately, he was targeted after unleashing the anger of the furious crowd," said Wang.

The demonstration led to a halt in production at all of the seven blast furnaces belonging to the steel manufacturer, which has a yearly throughput of about seven million tons.

Jianlong held 49 percent of shares in Tonghua between 2005 and the start of 2009, and restructured the company.

Last year, the joint venture experienced significant economic losses due to the global financial crisis, leading to a drop in production and cuts in salaries, causing discontent among workers.

One netizen said the murder at the end of last year of Song Kai, the head of a Tonghua-affiliated steel mill, allegedly at the hands of a 28-year-old worker, was another example of the friction between management and workers in the joint venture.

Jianlong left the partnership in March and workers reportedly celebrated with fireworks.

This month, Tonghua State-owned Assets Supervision and Administration Commission reported that the company, which "went through some very tough challenges in past 10 years", had made a profit of 42.7 million yuan ($6.2 million) in June.

But on July 22, workers learned that Jianlong had secured more than 50 percent of the company's shares, giving it full control.

Local government representatives announced on Friday night that the deal would now be shelved permanently and the crowd dispersed.

Jianlong and Tonghua are respectively ranked 158th and 244th in the top 500 Chinese companies.

Source: China Daily

China Culture 0 Comment July 28, 2009, 2:40 pm

China venture capital market vigorous in Q2

China's venture capital market saw vigorous fund raising and investments in the second quarter, said Monday's China Daily, citing a new report from the market researcher Zero2IPO Group.

According to the report, 17 funds were established in the second quarter, among which newly raised funds available for investment in China's mainland totaled 1.37 billion U.S. dollars.

The number of new funds increased by seven from the previous quarter, and newly added capital increased by 53.8 percent.

Zero2IP Group CEO Gavin Ni said the country's robust economic recovery, pending initial public offerings (IPOs) and new rules for listing on the Growth Enterprise Board (GEB) have attracted the positive attention of investment institutions at home and abroad.

In the second quarter, 99 Chinese enterprises attracted venture capital investments, including 77 that reported investments totaling 567.89 million U.S. dollars.

The Zero2IPO report showed that both the number and amount of investment deals rose quarter-on-quarter. The number of deals increased by 46, or 86.8 percent. The amount involved increased from 319.68 million U.S. dollars in the previous quarter to 567.89 million U.S. dollars.

Five private equity (PE) funds available for investment in China completed fund raising totaling 1.82 billion U.S. dollars -- a three-fold increase from the first quarter.

A total of 13 cross-border merger and acquisition (M&A) deals were completed in the second quarter, and 10 of them disclosed a total of 4.31 billion U.S. dollars.

Compared with the same period last year, the number of cross-border M&A deals fell 40.9 percent, but the total M&A value jumped 178.5 percent.

Source: china view


China News 0 Comment July 27, 2009, 5:59 pm

Edward Lehman invited to attend Silver Summit

Published: July 8th, 2009

BEIJING C While Edward Lehman, Managing Director of leading red circle law firm Lehman, Lee & Xu is no stranger to providing counsel to diplomatic missions and financial institutions, Lehman is also widely recognized as an expert in the field of mining law. ^The mining sector in China has developed later than developed countries and the authorities have had to develop laws in a very short time ̄, states Ed Lehman, Managing Director of the firm, ^as one of the longest established law firms we have been at the forefront of legal developments in the field, giving us a unique perspective in this area. Similarly our Mongolia office is the leading firm regarding mining and resource law in that jurisdiction ̄ .

Lehman, the longest serving (and only foreign) Managing Director of any law firm in China, has long had an interest in the area and was recently appointed to the board of directors of the Shoshone mining corporation, based in Coeur d¨Alene, Idaho. ^I¨ve had a passion for the field for a long time due to its relevance to the economy and its fascinating history. To be appointed as a board member was truly an honor ̄. Lehman¨s passion for the mining sector has led to him being called upon by the business community in China to assist with mining related matters. ^I¨m always happy to help out in any way I can. My door is always open ̄.

The Silver Summit is the pinnacle event in the silver mining calendar, bringing experts from the field globally each year for to discuss the development of the global silver mining industry.

The two day conference organized by the Pan American Silver Corporation is being held in Spokane Washington, a mining centre known for its proximity to some of North America¨s largest silver mines. The summit brings together some of the most prominent names in the field including Ross Beatty, Earl Bennett, David Bond and Jeffrey Christian. ^You literally have the global silver mining industry¨s key people at this event ̄ relays Lehman. ^Bringing these names toghther with some of the leading players in the field commercially such as Bear Creek,Endeavor and First Majestic you really have an unmissable event ̄.


China Culture 0 Comment July 23, 2009, 5:34 pm

China's largest free trade zone operator to inject realty assets to listed arm

Shanghai Waigaoqiao Group, China's largest free trade zone operator owned by the Shanghai municipal government, will inject its remaining real estate assets into its publicly traded unit, the Shanghai Waigaoqiao Free Trade Zone Development Co, reported Wednesday's China Daily.

The move follows the restructuring in June 2008 when the Shanghai-listed unit acquired a string of assets, including properties and logistics services, for 4.47 billion yuan (638.6 million U.S. dollars) from three other group affiliates in a shareswap.

These assets constituted a major share of Waigaoqiao Group's core businesses and accounted for 82 percent of the company's total income.

The latest asset transfer is seen to be in line with the local government's urge to reform the State-owned enterprises through assets injection and equity acquisition, said the newspaper, citing an unnamed senior manager of the group.

The restructuring anticipation has raised the share price of Waigaoqiao Free Trade Zone by more than 14 percent in the past three months to close at 16.12 yuan on Tuesday.

Source: Xin Hua News

China News 0 Comment July 23, 2009, 9:18 am

Eion Murdock Interviewed by CCTV 9 to Talk on the Relationship Between Federal Government and the State Governments of the United States

On July 14, 2009, Eion Murdock, Foreign Legal Counselor of Lehman, Lee & Xu Was Interviewed on the telephone by CCTV 9 to talk on the relationship between the Federal Government and the State Governments of the United States in the CCTV Dialogue program entitled "Ethnic Autonomy and economic prosperity".

Mr. Murdock gave a brief introduction on how the Federal Government of the United States and the 50 state governments deal with issues that occur between the federal government and the various states.

The program, which aired on July 14, focused on several issues relating to the recent unrest in the Xinjiang region of western China.


China Culture 0 Comment July 21, 2009, 11:40 am

Banking regulator should regulate credit cards

A blanket ban that the China Banking Regulatory Commission announced on issuing credit cards to students under the age of 18 does not mount to an adequate response to the rising default risks in the credit card market.

Improved regulation of the credit card market requires China's banking regulator to press commercial lenders to carefully assess creditworthiness before issuing cards while encouraging innovations to improve consumers' advantages.

The number of credit cards in China has almost tripled in the last three years to 150 million by the end of March this year because of both aggressive promotion and more adaptation to credit consumption.

As the credit card business becomes an increasingly important source of revenue, domestic banks vie with one another to issue as many cards as possible. Some even made the number of new cards a measure of performance.

It was under such circumstances that domestic banks began to offer credit cards to students though most of them do not have a steady income.

A recent report by the People's Bank of China found that credit card debt, which is at least six months overdue, surged 133.1 percent in the first quarter from a year early to 4.97 billion yuan.

That sum looks tiny compared with new loans worth trillions of yuan that Chinese banks have lent so far this year. And, it has seemingly not even made a dent on the balance sheet of banks. By the end of June, commercial banks in the country have managed to cut down the total of non-performing loans by 42.2 billion yuan from the beginning of this year.

Nevertheless, commercial lenders still cannot afford to ignore the potential risk of overdue credit card debt. The explosive expansion of the market can lead to an upsurge in defaults that will hurt both banks and consumers in the absence of due diligence before the cards are issued.

The successful operation of student credit cards in other countries indicates that the business does not have to be a bad one. To a certain extent, it is just a financial invention that offers both benefits and risks. And, if properly administered, it adds to both consumers' welfare and banks' profits.

Denying credit cards to all students under the age of 18 regardless of their varying financial condition will spare banks the trouble of identifying the creditworthy but entail loss of revenue.

If the credit card market is to be further explored, the banking regulator should focus on correcting the skewed incentives commercial lenders adopt for expanding such business.

Besides, concrete efforts are also needed to safeguard consumers against complex financial products (which are open to abuse), that people cannot understand easily and use properly.

Original source: China Daily
Source: Xinhua Net

China Business 0 Comment July 21, 2009, 11:39 am


By Jiang Wei (China Daily)

On June 23, the Obama administration filed a complaint with the World Trade Organization (WTO) against China, alleging that China is restricting the exports of nine raw materials important to US manufacturing.

It is the just one example of new trade frictions developing between China and the United States.

The US Department of Commerce on June 26 opened a probe into whether China has dumped or subsidized wire decking sold in the US market.

The probe followed the initiation of similar investigations into wire strand and steel grating products earlier in June.

Experts said rising trade protectionism tends to accompany economic recessions.

Following the three US anti-dumping and countervailing investigations into imports of Chinese steel products in June, China's Ministry of Commerce posted a strongly worded statement on its website expressing its concerns about what it believes is protectionism.

"China is shocked at the frequency of the cases and the strength of the targeting. Chinese industry is extremely dissatisfied and the government deeply concerned," the Ministry of Commerce statement read.

"These actions are sending the wrong signals about trade protectionism within the United States to the international community," the statement read.

US authorities have said the goal is simply to protect the rights of domestic industries.

In another development, China last month rejected US and European charges that its restrictions on raw materials exports violate international trade rules, saying that its policies were in keeping with WTO regulations.

The European Union and the United States said they were taking a complaint to the World Trade Organization over China's export curbs on some industrial raw materials used in steel, cars, microchips, planes and other products.

By arguing that the export taxes and quotas keep a lid on Chinese firms' costs, the WTO complaint takes the view that they are essentially a subsidy and distort competition for chemical, steel and non-ferrous metal producers outside China.

"The main objective of China's relevant export policies is to protect the environment and natural resources. China believes the policies in question are in keeping with WTO rules," the Ministry of Commerce press office said in a mildly-worded response.

Despite such frictions, Sino-US trade still represents one of the world's more important trade relationships.

In the first half of this year, the United States remained China's second-largest trade partner, with bilateral trade volume totaling $132.09 billion -- down 16.6 percent from a year ago.

During the same period, China's trade with major trade partners saw a bigger decline, including a 20.9 percent drop in trade with the European Union, a 23.1 percent decline with Japan and 23.8 percent fall with the Association of Southeast Asian Nations.

The trade imbalance between the United States and China is not sustainable, and the two countries have a joint responsibility to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, US Commerce Secretary Gary Locke said last Wednesday in Beijing.

"There do exist some issues in our bilateral trade relations, including cooperation on high-tech products," Chinese commerce ministry spokesman Yao Jian told a press conference last Wednesday in Beijing.

China's big surplus in its trade with the United States has become a global concern, he said.

"Of course, it's a separate issue as to how to interpret the trade surplus. In a globalized world today, trade surplus does not necessarily mean trade benefits," Yao said, pointing out that China mainly exports labor-intensive products.

Assistant Minister of Commerce Wang Chao said "Made in China" products have become more important to US consumers, adding that the massive Chinese market also is translating into more profits for US enterprises.

He cited a report from the US Chamber of Commerce on the business environment in China.

That report stated that 74 percent of US enterprises investing in China are making a profit in China, and that 91 percent of those businesses plan to expand in China.

"US trade and investment in China also helps China upgrade its industries," Wang said.

He estimated bilateral trade between the two countries will exceed $500 billion in the next five years, and that relations will be more in balance within that time period.

As for trade frictions, Wang said China is not pursuing a trade surplus and is not taking measures to increase imports from the United States.

Wang did call on the United States to remove restrictions on exports to China to narrow the trade gap between the two countries.

Zhang Lijuan, a professor at the School of Economics at Shandong University, said trade relations likely will be a major topic during the first round of the Sino-US Strategic and Economic Dialogue scheduled later this month in Washington, DC.

"Free trade is no longer a keynote for the Obama administration, and instead, 'Buy American' is a focus of US stimulus bills," Zhang said.

"The 'free but fair' trade policy initiative can be interpreted as a new type of trade protectionism," she said.

Zhang said China has urged the United States to lift its ban on technology exports to partially offset its trade deficit with China, although the US-China trade imbalance won't be at the top of the agenda.

Inevitably, trade promotion and expansion will drive the direction of bilateral trade talks, she said.

Zhang said trade-related issues likely will be discussed at greater length at the fall meeting of the high-level Joint Commission on Commerce and Trade (JCCT).

"The two sides will exchange views on trade policies and attempt to intensify cooperation on global economic and financial issues," Zhang said.

"Trade-related issues such as intellectual property rights and standards on the environment, labor, and product safety will be addressed at both meetings," she said.

Source: China Daily

China News 0 Comment July 20, 2009, 4:34 pm


Jane Cai in Beijing
Jul 17, 2009

The mainland's economic recovery is real and the stimulus has taken effect, economists said yesterday after it reported growth of 7.9 per cent in the second quarter, bringing Beijing's 8 per cent goal for the full year in sight.
The growth in output was sharply higher than the 6.1 per cent in the first three months of the year, and raised first-half growth to 7.1 per cent. Still, officials cautioned the recovery was uneven, benefiting mostly big state-owned enterprises (SOEs) rather than the private sector.

Analysts agreed the 4 trillion yuan (HK$4.54 trillion) stimulus package was largely responsible for the pickup in GDP growth. Several raised their projections for full-year growth.

"Recovery is quite real now, not just green shoots," said Lu Ting, an economist with Merrill Lynch.

UBS economist Wang Tao said: "The GDP will send a reassuring signal to the authorities that their economic stimulus has taken effect."

Despite the strong performance, Li Xiaochao , spokesman for the National Statistics Bureau, said there were uncertainties. "The foundation of recovery is still unstable and unbalanced as far as different enterprises, regions and groups of people are concerned."

Beijinger Cui Jinhua, 26, can attest to the difficulties. He was hired last month after seeking a job related to his training in computer science for almost a year. "It was so hard to find a job," he said. "I think I should be grateful to earn a living selling floorboards for 2,000 yuan a month and free lodging."

Economists have said the private sector - with small and medium-sized enterprises the main players and crucial for employment - has been left further behind.

SOEs have soaked up much of the funds, as well as a record-high 7.37 trillion yuan in bank loans extended in the first half. These have sent fixed-asset investment soaring, and funds flooding into railways, roads and property. Urban fixed-asset investment grew 33.6 per cent year on year in the first half, the most in five years.

Industrial output rose a better-than-expected 10.7 per cent last month from a year earlier, as this investment and retail sales more than offset a 21.4 per cent year-on-year fall in exports; retail sales grew 15 per cent from a year earlier. As evidence of that, the China Internet Network Information Centre yesterday reported 38 million more people are surfing the Web using mobile phones than six months earlier. And computer maker Lenovo (SEHK: 0992, announcements, news) 's sales grew in the second quarter after six months of decline.

The world economy is still trailing China's but the 30-nation Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development has raised its forecast for member economies for the first time in two years, citing China's growth. Still, some question whether China's momentum can be sustained and real demand can support continued strong growth. Prices dipped more than expected last month.

"China should pay attention to the sustainability of economic growth," said Zuo Xiaolei, of Beijing-based Galaxy Securities. "The effect of the stimulus may not last for long."

Source: South China Morning Post...

China News 0 Comment July 17, 2009, 1:59 pm

Judge Faces Punishment for Handcuffing Attorney

Senior officials in Yuxi intermediate court of southwest China's Yunan Province vowed on Sunday to punish a judge in Chengjiang county of Yuxi city who handcuffed an attorney to basketball stands in the burning sun for 40 minutes for his refusing to sign a court record that failed to completely record what the attorney had testified in court.

During a civil trial in Chengjiang county court on Friday, attorney He voiced an opinion on a legal procedure that differed from that of judge Hong, according to a report by Beijing Times.

After the trial, attorney He refused to sign his name on the court record because it did not include his key opinion on the legal procedure, and he believed he had a right to refuse to sign it.

But the judge, angry over He's refusal to sign the document, asked the court police to detain the lawyer, although He told him that the detention order had to be approved by the court's chief judge, according to Chinese law. But the court police handcuffed He under a nearby basketball stand for 40 minutes in line with Hong's order until the court chief judge came to release him and apologized.

On Sunday, the Yuxi intermediate court, the superior court of Chengjiang county court, issued a statement after its investigation that the judge had done wrong and that it would deal with him sternly.

He posted a letter of accusation on the Internet on Sunday night and decided to send it to the provincial procuratorates on Monday.

In the letter, He said that without the chief judge's permission, Hong had wrongfully detained him under the basketball stands in the burning sun for 40 minutes and Hong also deleted the file in his cell phone. He said he believed Hong's actions infringed upon his legal rights. He said according to Chinese criminal law, Hong should be charged with unlawful detention.


China Law 0 Comment July 16, 2009, 9:27 am

Lehman Lee & Xu presents to students

BEIJING C Attorneys and summer associates from Lehman Lee & Xu presented a variety of topics today to students from the CBL International China Business School. The students at CBL - coming from Germany, the Netherlands, Switzerland, the United Kingdom, the United States, Singapore, and Australia - have been in China for a few weeks now learning about issues arising when doing business in China.

Andrew Lillis, Foreign Legal Counselor at Lehman Lee & Xu, introduced the students to the firm before opening the floor to the firm¨s summer associates. Each summer associate gave a short presentation on a legal topic they have found interesting while working in Beijing this summer. Jackson Moller discussed the role of arbitration in resolving international commercial disputes. This was followed by a lecture on the structural legal challenges for China¨s WTO compliance presented by Robert Hart, and another lecture on the WTO and protectionism in China by Eric Langland. Sam Engutsamy discussed trademark law in China, and Richard Fleming talked about China¨s criminal law and procedure. To close the session, Andrew Lillis addressed some of the legal issues involved when doing business in China.

Although not able to attend the meeting with CBL while out of town on business, Edward Lehman, managing director of Lehman Lee & Xu, relays this message via email: ^I have always viewed CBL as an innovative program in China, allowing international students to hear from practicing attorneys about the practical aspects of doing business in China. There is only so much that can be learned in the classroom. ̄ Lehman continues, ^I look forward to meeting next years CBL class when they visit Lehman Lee & Xu. ̄

Lehman Lee & Xu, one of China¨s largest law firms, is a leader in the field of corporate law and also specializes in intellectual property. If you have any questions about this presentation, or would like Lehman Lee & Xu to present to your school, please email mail@lehmanlaw.com and we will be sure to get back to you right away.

China News 0 Comment July 15, 2009, 5:03 pm

Warmest Welcome to New Interns from CUPL-BJ office

Dear all,

We are pleased to announce that we have six Chinese interns from China University of Political Science and Law (CUPL) to place their internship in our firm since today.

Mr. Wang Yu (藍嚴)

http://blawg.lehmanlaw.com/english//uploadfiles/wang yu_86467.jpg

Ms. Li Wanwan (川淀淀)

http://blawg.lehmanlaw.com/english//uploadfiles/li wanwan_24172.jpg

Ms. Yu Yaqi (噤囘范)

http://blawg.lehmanlaw.com/english//uploadfiles/yu yaqi_45875.jpg

Ms. Luo Lili (袋栓栓)

http://blawg.lehmanlaw.com/english//uploadfiles/luo lili_84457.jpg

Ms. Wang Shiyuan(藍弊坩)

http://blawg.lehmanlaw.com/english//uploadfiles/wang shiyuan_35076.jpg

Ms. Wen Xin (梁椣)

http://blawg.lehmanlaw.com/english//uploadfiles/wen xin_69013.jpg

Please join us to welcome them....

China Blawg (en) 0 Comment July 15, 2009, 12:20 pm

Lehman, Lee & Xu comments on Beijing¨s Clean-tech Conference

Published: July 14th, 2009

BEIJING C Experts from a wide range of industries gathered together at the China Cleantech Business Forum conference held at the Shangri-La Hotel in Beijing on July 8th, 2009. Lehman, Lee & Xu¨s managing director Edward Lehman, head of the Energy & Resources practice at the firm, was satisfied with the results of the conference. He commented that ^the fast-growing clean energy and clean technology industry brings in new challenges and opportunities for businesses and law firms. It is our goal to stay ahead of the curve and we believe that networking with the key players is the best way to achieve this end ̄.

Events seem to be moving in China faster than in any other country in relation to the development of green-tech and new and renewable energy. ^At least there is a strong commitment C comments Edward Lehman C and at the very least there is noticeable movement. Authorities¨ representatives, investors, and other players are working together, engaging in discussion, and building new opportunities. It doesn¨t really matter now how strong the legal framework is, and the degree to which the laws will be enforced. What really matters is that there is a will to progress ̄.

Moreover, an amazing feature of the clean-tech conference was the participation not only of experts and businesses from the clean-tech industry, but also of people not related to the clean-tech field, attending simply for personal interest and curiosity. This is a sign that clean-tech may switch from mere business to a way of living, a green-trend. And the creation of such awareness is fundamental to feed a major change for China toward a sustainable economic growth....

China News 0 Comment July 14, 2009, 5:50 pm

Legal Pioneer Edward Lehman named as regional president of Global Advertising Lawyers Alliance- Asia-Pacific

Published: July 6th, 2009

SHANGHAI C Ed Lehman, Managing Director of leading red circle law firm Lehman, Lee & Xu, has been named as the President of the Asia-Pacific grouping of the Global Advertising Lawyer Alliance.

Lehman,a long time China resident and preeminent expert on Chinese intellectual property and media/advertising law, has played a leading role in the Global Advertising Lawyer¨s Alliance since its inception and is regularly called upon to comment on developments in Chinese advertising law by members of the organization. ^Its an exciting time to assume this role ̄, relays Lehman. ^There are a number of new developments throughout the region in a number of countries, from Australia to China and the downturn is providing opportunities for a lot of smaller players in the field. ̄

The Global Advertising Lawyer¨s Alliance was founded to provide a network of the leading independent law firms in the industry. A main goal of the organization is to improve cooperation amongst firms from different regions as the industry becomes increasingly globalized. ^Client often ask about our relationships with other law firms ̄, relays Ed. ^Its always reassuring for our clients to know that they are not only getting our own expertise but additionally are getting the expertise of 57 law firms throughout six continents ̄.

Lehman¨s journey to where he is today was a long one. ^I first came to China in 1987 and stayed after the turmoil that defined 1989. ̄ Relays Ed. ^The domestic advertising industry was still in an embryonic stage C it had been less than a decade since the first licensed domestic advertisement was aired ̄. The country has come along way since then with many of the global players now established in China. ^From the sole Radar watch advertisement in 1979 to the multiple medium media blitzes seen today the industry has transformed itself and I¨m honored to have worked with some of the leading players in the industry ̄.

With contributions from Xu Jiahui

Leading Chinese law firm presents at Global Advertising Lawyers Event

Published: June 30, 2009

GUANGZHOU CWhile leading red circle law firm, Lehman, Lee & Xu regularly attends the annual meeting of Global Advertising Lawyers this year was different, as the firm presented on new developments in the Chinese advertising field to a a diverse range of multinational companies. ^It was truly an honor to present on new developments to representatives from some of the best known American brands such as Hersheys, Home Depot, Microsoft, Disney, GE and Universal Studios ̄, relays Ed Lehman, Managing Director of the firm.

With a number of recent developments in the Chinese advertising industry there is much to talk about the future direction of the industry. In October of last year the authorities loosened the regulations for the establishment of Wholly Foreign Owned Advertising Ventures. ^These rules made it more attractive for international firms to come into the local market ̄, states Lehman. ^That said though it is not as easy a market as it once was; the key local players such as Beijing Dentsu and Jiangsu DAHE are becoming increasingly competitive ̄.

A main focus of the presentation for the event at the University of Seattle was in game advertising. ^China is a nation of online gamers and the potential in this industry is huge ̄ says Mike Smith, freelance marketing consultant in the industry. ^with online gaming different ads can be placed in a game depending on the time of day; for example energy drinks and food for late night gamers ̄.

Often at presentations China related topics attract significant interest, ^there were a lot attendees naturally curious as to what potential business opportunities there could be in China ̄ states Lehman. ^In addition to that though there were many there looking for trends in the Chinese market that may be applicable to the U.S. market. ̄

Other firms presenting at the event included Reed Smith, Thomson Playford Cutlers and Veirano Advogados.

China News 0 Comment July 14, 2009, 10:23 am

Leading Chinese law firm fosters role in combating corporate fraud

Published: July 13th, 2009
BEIJING C While leading red circle law firm Lehman, Lee & Xu has built up a strong reputation in the fields of Intellectual Property and Mergers & Acquisitions, the firm also plays a key role in combating corporate fraud. ^Every year billions are lost through corporate fraud, ̄ relays Edward Lehman, managing director of the firm, ^and unfortunately a lot of is due to carelessness. ̄
Many people in business who were used to meeting targets in the boom years are now feeling pressure to achieve the same levels in spite of the downturn. ^This, unfortunately can lead to fraud ̄ states Lehman, long time China resident and Sinologist.
During the boom years businesses were successful in spite of corporate fraud. Now however businesses are suffering because of it, with recent surveys showing that fraud is a real concern for over 60% of senior managers in China. ^Its only natural to worry about receivables during tough economic times. The last thing businesses want though is to be worried about fraud ̄.
In an effort to help its clients cope with the problem the firm has began giving seminars on how to avoid fraud and the legal recourse available where business managers find themselves victims. ^Forewarned is forearmed in these situations ̄ says Lehman who has been advising companies on best business practices for over two decades. ^Senior managers need to have an awareness of potential red flags ̄. Such flags are not just related to the behavior but also to business partners and suppliers. ^What makes it so difficult to combat corporate fraud is the many forms it comes in ̄.
Although more prevalent in tough times Lehman is under no illusion as to the route cause of the problem. ^The combination of greed and carelessness is at the root of most fraud. When you look at the Bernard Madoff scandal, it was the history of poor oversight which allowed the scheme to continue for so long ̄ notes Lehman. ...

China Law 1 Comment July 13, 2009, 11:52 am

Lehman, Lee & Xu to present to students from China Business School

Published: July 13th, 2009
BEIJING C Attorneys from Lehman, Lee & Xu¨s have been asked to present to students from the China School of Business & Law. The program, which gives students from the school the chance to experience Chinese law and culture first hand demonstrates the increasing importance foreign law schools are placing on Chinese law.
A key aspect of the address is to be practical issues faced by lawyers working in China. ^The practical aspects are really the most important. There is only so much that can be learned in the classroom. It is our hope that providing an insight into the way we practice law will provide the students with an added dimension ̄, relays Edward Lehman, Managing Director of Lehman, Lee & Xu.
Such programs were virtually unheard of even several years ago however there are now a number of such programs where students from a number of countries come to China to experience first hand the explosive economic growth and meet key people from the fields of business and law.
This is the second year Lehman, Lee & Xu has been asked to present to China School of Business and Law. ^We always cherish the relationships we build with educational institutions. ̄ Relays Lehman ^CBL is an excellent example of education that is both thorough and relevant ̄.
The firm, one of China¨s largest, is a leader in the field of corporate law and also specialized in intellectual property. With a team comprised of both foreign and Chinese law styled on an American law firm model the firm offers a unique approach amongst Chinese law firms.

China News 0 Comment July 13, 2009, 8:52 am


Published: July 9, 2009


Beijing ! With China¨s global presence increasing at a phenomenal rate abroad, and international investment flooding into the country, trademark registration is turning out to be a topic high on the agenda list of any company incorporated in China, be it domestic or international.

The Chinese legislature has recognised the growing importance of all intellectual property law rights, from trademarks to patents. The revised 2001 Trademark Law seeks to deal with changes in China¨s growing domestic market, such as an increase in the maximum statutory damages that can be awarded, and the inclusion of three dimensional marks deemed satisfactory for registration purposes. Coinciding with China¨s WTO commitments and obligations, that promised stronger enforcement of trademark rights, China has started making progressive steps to protect the rights of others in an attempt to curb the rapid spate of counterfeiting.

One advantage from the 2001 Trademark Law companies can benefit from is the registration of well known marks, with Chivas Regal being one of the most recent companies to jump onto the trademark registration bandwagon. The Chinese Trade Mark Office (CTMO) recognised both `Chivas Regal¨ and `Chivas¨ as ^well known trademarks ̄ satisfying the criteria laid down under Article 14 of the 2001 Trademark Law. The former name being registered in both English and Chinese characters, and the latter in English. Chivas¨ scope of protection is not merely limited to ^goods ̄ under Class 33 (alcoholic beverages) but cross-class protection if registration of a new product is likely to cause public confusion.

With China accounting for the largest market of Chivas Regal whiskey, and with significant levels of investments being ploughed into the country for promotional reasons, the rubber stamped approval of the Chivas trademark ensures that a third party cannot appropriate the good name and accrued reputation Chivas has amassed over their years of business. Charles Chan, Foreign Legal Counsel at Lehman, Lee & Xu detailed that ^the recognition of an international brand name such as Chivas Regal attaining copyright protection in China indicates how far China has progressed in aligning its stance with that of other countries. ̄

Chivas¨ brand name protection marks the second victory for the whiskey industry in its steady battle against Chinese counterfeiting. Earlier in 2008, the CTMO granted trademark protection to `Scotch whiskey,¨ which, registered as a collective trademark prohibits counterfitters from passing off spirits that have not been produced in Scotland.

Further progress taken by the Chinese authorities also included an award of $180,000 to Diageo, the manufacturers of Johnnie Walker Black Label, after a Shanghai based firm was found guilty of unlawfully infringing upon the trademarked Johnnie Walker packaging.

Eion Murdock, Foreign Legal Counsel at Lehman, Lee & Xu highlighted that ^both the Chivas Regal and the Johnnie Walker issues highlights that in order to protect potential investment into China from international companies in the future, the courts need to uphold and protect their identifiable intellectual property rights, ̄ he continues ^by actually doing this the judiciary are opening the door for more foreign companies to sell their products in China, as they know that their trademarks will be protected, upheld and enforced under Chinese law. ̄...

China News 0 Comment July 9, 2009, 9:49 am

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