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PRESIDENT HU SHORTENS VISIT TO ITALY AND GOES BACK HOME

By Sun Shangwu (chinadaily.com.cn)
Updated: 2009-07-08 07:15

FLORENCE, Italy: The situation in Xinjiang has shortened President Hu Jintao's visit to Italy and he will be absent at the summit meeting between the Group of Eight (G8) industrialized nations and five emerging developing countries in the central Italian city of L'Aquila.

He left Italy for Beijing this morning after concluding the State visit to the country.

His leave is days ahead of schedule because of the riots in Xinjiang, according to the Foreign Ministry.

A total of 156 people died and a further 1,000-odd were injured in the riot Sunday evening in Urumqi, capital of northwest China's Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region.

The riot is described as the "deadliest riot since New China was founded in 1949."

Rioters burned 261 motor vehicles, including 190 buses, at least 10 taxis and two police cars, according to Liu Yaohua, the region's police chief.

President Hu arrived in Rome on Sunday to start his State visit to Italy. According to the original plan, he will attend the meeting between the leaders of the G8 major industrial nations and five main developing economies from July 8-10 in the central Italian city of L'Aquila. And then, President Hu will also visit Portugal from July 10-12.

State Councillor Dai Bingguo will represent Hu to attend the session, according to the Foreign Ministry.

And the Chinese and Portugal governments will discuss the date of Hu's State visit at some other time.

The G8 nations are Britain, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Russia, Canada and the United States, while the G5 includes China, India, Brazil, Mexico and South Africa.

Source: South China Morning Post...

China News 0 Comment July 8, 2009, 5:30 pm

Lehman, Lee & Xu attorneys invited to address University of Minnesota/Renmin University Law Program

Published: July 8th, 2009
BEIJING 每 Attorneys from Lehman, Lee & Xu*s Beijing practice recently presented to students from the University of Minnesota School of Law and Renmin School of Law. The program, which gives students from the University of Minnesota and other law schools the chance to experience Chinese law and culture for a month each summer demonstrates the increasing importance foreign law schools are placing on Chinese law. ※
Attorneys Andrew Lillis (a Minnesota alumi) and Marisa Planells Valero spoke about the life of a foreign lawyer in China, using practical examples to augment their talk. ※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 Lehman.
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 U.S. and European law schools visit China. ※While few will want to practice long term in China many find it useful to have an overview of the legal system here. I really think it helps them in their careers§.
Lehman, Lee & Xu has had a long and fruitful relationship with Renmin University, having hosted a number of its professors as ※of counsel§ to boost its litigation practice. ※I have always viewed Renmin University as one of the most innovative in China§ , relays Ed, long time China resident who has forged relationships with a number of China*s top educational institutions.
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 Culture 0 Comment July 8, 2009, 3:51 pm

Lehman, Lee & Xu attorneys invited to address University of Minnesota/Renmin University Law Program

Published: July 8th, 2009
BEIJING 每 Attorneys from Lehman, Lee & Xu*s Beijing practice recently presented to students from the University of Minnesota School of Law and Renmin School of Law. The program, which gives students from the University of Minnesota and other law schools the chance to experience Chinese law and culture for a month each summer demonstrates the increasing importance foreign law schools are placing on Chinese law. ※
Attorneys Andrew Lillis (a Minnesota alumi) and Marisa Planells Valero spoke about the life of a foreign lawyer in China, using practical examples to augment their talk. ※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 Lehman.
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 U.S. and European law schools visit China. ※While few will want to practice long term in China many find it useful to have an overview of the legal system here. I really think it helps them in their careers§.
Lehman, Lee & Xu has had a long and fruitful relationship with Renmin University, having hosted a number of its professors as ※of counsel§ to boost its litigation practice. ※I have always viewed Renmin University as one of the most innovative in China§ , relays Ed, long time China resident who has forged relationships with a number of China*s top educational institutions.
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 Culture 0 Comment July 8, 2009, 3:51 pm

Top China law firm Lehman, Lee & Xu participates in clean-tech roundtable

Published: July 8th, 2009

BEIJING 每 The clean-tech industry in China is witnessing an amazing rate of growth, and firms from all sectors are vying to get a piece of the pie. Lehman, Lee & Xu is notably pro-active in the area, with its Energy & Resources practice group well-focused on green investment and new and renewable energy projects. The Energy & Resources group is headed by Edward Lehman himself, the managing director of the firm.

As such, the China Cleantech Business Forum is a conference that the firm could not miss. The event takes place at the Shangri-La Hotel in Beijing today and represents a significant opportunity for players from the clean-tech industry to network and expand their business. Lehman underlines that ※events like the China Cleantech Business Forum are key to getting the practical insights and the necessary connections that we professionals need to advance in China*s clean-energy and clean-technology fields. We believe that the event will be a success for all of the participants§.

China's commitment to become more energy-efficient and to shift toward a more environmentally-friendly approach to sustain its fast-pace economic growth and comply with its obligations - though they are non-binding - under the Kyoto Protocol, create numerous opportunities for foreign and domestic investors in the research, development, and sale of green technology. The most technologically advanced countries, such as Japan and the US 每 California in particular 每 play major roles and are seeing the greatest benefits from their investment in the area. ...

China News 0 Comment July 8, 2009, 2:36 pm

Sometimes It Pays To Let Someone Interrupt Your Dinner

Last week I was sitting in a restaurant and really just wanted to be left alone. Work has been busy and I was thinking about a couple of cases I was working on. A Chinese guy sitting next to me kept trying to talk to me, though it was obvious I was trying to ignore him. At first I was pretty annoyed because I just wanted to eat in peace and assumed he only wanted to practice his English. But I was polite and we eventually struck up a conversation in which we both talked about what we did at work. I told him that I practice law in China and he said he worked for an auto loan finance company. This actually peaked my interest because I do a lot of labor and employment work, dealing with terminated managers and senior employees, stealing the company cars after they have been fired. In the past, I had always been told that China does not have any businesses that do auto repossession ※repo man§ services. My dinner partner proceeded to tell me that his work involves not only going after people who don*t pay their auto loans but also repossessing the cars. He offered to email me a whole list of guys that would locate the car, go in the middle of the night, break into the car, and drive off. It was exactly the service I had been looking for and had always been told didn*t exist in China. I guess sometimes it does pay to let people practice their English during your dinner!



Scott Garner
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China Blawg (en) 0 Comment July 8, 2009, 12:31 pm

Leading Chinese law firm contributes chapter to Promotion and Media Advertising publication

Published: July 8th, 2009
BEIJING 每 While leading red circle law firm Lehman, Lee & Xu is no stranger to providing counsel to multinational corporations and high net worth individuals, the firm is also known for its role in contributing and authoring of legal publications. ※Chinese law is still firmly in a developing phase. We feel that our practical experience enables us to play a role in the development of Chinese law from a research perspective§, stated Ed Lehman, Managing Director of the firm.
A central focus of the firm is its media and advertising law practice. ※We are the exclusive China member for the Global Advertising Lawyers Alliance§, relays Lehman ※this puts is in a unique position to both cooperate with other firms in the advertising field internationally and also to contribute the global body of knowledge on media law generally§.
One aspect of this has been the firm*s contribution to the Promotional Media and Advertising Association*s publication on new developments in promotional and advertising law throughout the globe. ※China has seen some interesting developments lately with the focus of promotions shifting toward both general fairness and public safety§.
Much of the firm*s contribution to the guide springs from experience. ※We have had a number of clients recently who have dealt with many of the issues raised in the chapter. This has given us a unique perspective to comment on developments in this field§, states Lehman.
Traditionally sales promotions were covered by general laws but in the past number of years both the central government and provincial/municipal governments have published specific laws in the arena. ※As China continues to develop economically specific laws are needed to ensure that consumers are treated fairly§ says Lehman, a long time China resident and currently the longest serving (and only foreign) of any Managing Director of a law firm in China.
Other contributors to the guide include Thomson Playford Cutlers, Studio Legale Associato and Reed Smith. ※It is truly an honor to work with Reed Smith. They have a wide reach globally. They are in China also and focus on outbound work while we focus on inbound work. This provides a good synergy§, states Lehman. ...

China News 0 Comment July 8, 2009, 11:49 am

Leading Chinese law firm invited to regional health roundtable

Published: July 8th, 2009
BEIJING 每 While leading red circle law firm Lehman, Lee & Xu is no stranger to providing counsel to diplomatic missions and financial institutions, the firm is also known for its prominent health sciences practice. ※The life sciences 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 and we have been involved in both lobbying for better regulation and have assisted in the development of some of the most important legislative developments in this area. ※
Lehman, the longest serving (and only foreign) Managing Director of any law firm in China, had roots in the field long before he came to China, ※I was a chemistry major and biochemistry always interested me. When I came China in the 1980s I was eager to assist in the development of a body of pharmaceutical law in any way I could§. Lehman was a legal pioneer in the sector, acting as counsel for the Research and Development Pharmaceutical Association of China in addition to representing 28 of the 42 research based pharmaceutical companies in China.
When Lehman came to China in 1987 the pharmaceutical industry was in its infancy. Today the field is significantly different with Chinese manufacturers producing many of the drugs purchased in pharmacies throughout the United States and Europe. ※The manufacturing sector has developed at an astronomical rate and legal regulation has not lagged behind§, relays Ed, ※the State Food and Drug Administration has developed into a highly professional and regulated organization§.
The two day conference organized by the Asia Business Forum is designed to bring some of the leading names in the Asia Pacific region together such as Allan Marx Ancheta, Director of Sales Operations, for Merck Sharp & Dohme Philippines and Dr. Suchitra Kataria, head of business development for Bayer, Schering Pharma, Singapore. ※
...

China News 0 Comment July 8, 2009, 10:50 am

Police arrests 1,434 suspects in Xinjiang riot

(Xinhua)

Police have arrested 1,434 suspects in connection with the riot Sunday evening in Urumqi, capital of northwest China's Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region, according to official sources.

Li Yi, head of the publicity department of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Xinjiang regional committee, said early Tuesday morning that the suspects included 1,379 men and 55 women.

"The police have started interrogations with the suspects," said Li.
...

China News 0 Comment July 8, 2009, 10:24 am

Lehman, Lee & Xu invited to the Amcham Shanghai meeting with the China Working Group US Congressional Staff Delegation

Published: July 8th, 2009

AMCHAM NEWS

BEIJING 每 The third largest corporate and commercial Chinese law firm, Lehman Lee & Xu, was invited to the Amcham Shanghai meeting held on July 6th, 2009, with the China Working Group US Congressional Staff Delegation. In attendance was Scott Garner, director of the Shanghai office of the firm, who commented ※The event scores a goal in giving members the chance to engage in discussions with the people who directly influence US-China commercial relationships§.

The delegation included attendees such as Rich Goldberg (Senior Aide to Congressman Mark Kirk) and Mark Middaugh (Military Legislative Assistant to Congressman Rick Larsen). Many other US congressional staff also attended including Toni-Marie Calabrese (Legislative Assistant to Congressman John Boozman) and George Behan (Chief of Staff to Congressman Norm Dicks), in addition to Jan Berris (Vice President, National Committee on U.S. China Relations) and Andrew Mertha (Associate Professor of Government at Cornell University).

Amcham Shanghai 每 also called the ※Voice of American Business§ 每 is the largest and fastest-growing American Chamber of Commerce in the Asia-Pacific region, with over 4,000 members. The Chamber is fairly active in organizing activities for its associates spanning from business networking events to conferences and seminars. The goal of these events is to help members find new opportunities, expand their business, enhance their understanding of how to navigate the Chinese legal and cultural environment, and strengthen the US-China commercial partnership....

China News 0 Comment July 8, 2009, 10:23 am

Edward Lehman, ACA Chairman and ※red circle§ Chinese law firm managing director, comments on the 2009 Thomas Jefferson award

Published: July 8th, 2009

AMCHAM NEWS

BEIJING 每 The American Citizens Abroad (ACA) association traditionally places considerable efforts to support the US residential community in China. ACA Chairman, Mr Edward Lehman, a US citizen and US attorney, is the longest serving foreigner in China and the only foreign managing director of Chinese law firm, Lehman, Lee & Xu. He first practiced in Shanghai in 1987, working for a renowned ※pioneer§ US law firm, switching then to a state-run Chinese law firm 每 being the first foreign national to do so 每 following the Tiananmen events in 1989, choosing to remain in China when foreign law firms were instead swimming back to Hong Kong or to their own countries citing security concerns. In 1992, he co-founded his Lehman, Lee & Xu, one of the first eight private law firms to be set-up after the liberalization of the legal profession in the early &90s.

The 2009 Thomas Jefferson award has been assigned by the ACA to Ms Anne-Marie Cassela and Mr Mark Storella, US citizens residing in Haiti and Switzerland, who have both greatly contributed to the benefit of their local American community. Ms Cassela 每 Head of the American Citizens Services in Port-au-Prince, Haiti 每 has dealt with a considerable number of natural disasters and kidnapping situations, showing care for victims and their families and highlighting outstanding efficiency in her duties. Geneva-based Mr Storella, Charg谷 d*Affaires and Deputy Permanent Representative at the US mission, has been doing an impressive job in coordinating activities and meetings for overseas Americans. His exemplary methods are now being proposed to be adopted by US diplomatic missions all over the world.

Chairman of the ACA, Edward Lehman, a representative of the US community in China, expresses full support for Cassela and Storella commenting that ※the examples given by Anne-Marie and Mark are the reflection of the mission we should all serve as US citizens abroad, that of solidarity to our people and devotion to our country. We look forward to having candidates for the next edition of the award from the US Embasssy in China as we did in the previous years§.

Edward Lehman certainly plays an important role as a representative of a US citizen in China. It is a fact that he has been living here longer than any other person from any of the US diplomatic missions in China, serving on the board of governors of Amcham and participating in key negotiations with the Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs on behalf of US citizens and businesses. Lehman has also been closely relating with the US Charg谷 d'Affaires Dan Piccuta in these recent years.

As Managing Director of Lehman, Lee & Xu 每 the third largest Chinese law firm in China 每 he has coupled his role of an American citizens community organizer at the ACA, with that of a representative of the US Embassy in Beijing and US diplomatic missions in Shanghai, Guangzhou, Chengdu, Shenyang and Wuhan over the last 23 years. Additionally, he was the official counsel and representative of the US Olympic team at the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games. When asked to provide his thoughts about China*s progress in the protections of foreigners* rights, Edward proudly said that ※at the ACA we are committed in promoting the rule of law in China§ and seems satisfied when noting that ※we believe that the Chinese government is doing a fine job to make that happen§.

With contributions from Li Zhongwen...

China Culture 0 Comment July 8, 2009, 8:45 am

LAWYER HEADS US TEAM FOR EXPO BATTLE

Will Clem and Lilian Zhang in Shanghai
Jul 03, 2009

US Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton has appointed a Texas lawyer to oversee the country's embattled campaign to build a national pavilion at the 2010 World Expo in Shanghai.

Jose Villarreal was named commissioner general of the US pavilion with 10 months left before the opening.

Major expo buildings are rapidly taking shape and work is well under way on most of the 40 national pavilions that the countries are building on their own.

However, the US project remains a source of embarrassment for the organisers. Despite repeated deadlines, the US is the only country yet to confirm whether it will take part or when it plans to break ground.

Unlike other nations, the US pavilion is not being paid for with public funds, so its entire US$61 million budget has to come from private donations.

China News Service reported yesterday that the US finally confirmed its participation in the six-month-long fair, but that appeared to be a false alarm.

A spokesman for the Shanghai Expo Bureau said organisers had not received confirmation from the United States.

"But there are still possibilities, and we are now actively pushing forward," he said.

A spokeswoman for the US pavilion's team said they had not received word from Washington that a formal confirmation had been authorised.

Mr Villarreal's appointment came hot on the heels of one of the pavilion's biggest donations - the organising team struck a US$5 million deal with Pepsi in Beijing on Wednesday, suggesting the troubled project is finally gaining momentum.

However, the fund-raising team declined to reveal how much has been raised so far, and have previously suggested that construction might not start for several more months.

The exact nature of Mr Villarreal's role is not clear, but the US State Department said he would be "responsible for oversight of the US pavilion" and "the official US government representative to the government of China on issues relating to World Expo Shanghai 2010".

Source: South China Morning Post
...

China Law 0 Comment July 3, 2009, 9:19 am

Fraudsters Profiting through Cybersquatting

Even as an internet savvy user〞I discovered a recent article on ※cybersquatting§ that has me wondering how the legal issues of intellectual property will come to address this topic. Addressing actual manufacturing and distribution of illegal copies of branded products is still a controversial topic〞as these markets would not exist without consumer demand for counterfeited goods. However this new arena of cybersquatting, false associations, and phishing are not in response to a market demand but fertile ground for fraudsters to scam internet users.

As I examined the fake and real ※refinance your home now§ or even various fake websites that had appropriated the name of famous retailers〞I was shocked at how well these domains appeared to be legitimate. Through abusing trademarks within the domain name system, using specified brands or trademarks to imply relationships where none exist, and diverting internet traffic to fraudulently acquire personal information and credit card details〞fraudsters are finding more and more ways to make a profit.

By Senayt Rahwa
...

China Law 0 Comment July 2, 2009, 5:00 pm

※RED CIRCLE§ CHINESE FIRM HELPS CLIENTS CUT THROUGH VAT CONFUSION

Published: July 1, 2009
AMCHAM NEWS

BEIJING 每 In December 2008 China introduced radical changes to the operation of its VAT system, including reforms to its import VAT exemption. Many importers have been confused about the changes to the exemption. Lehman, Lee & Xu, one of the leading corporate commercial law firms in China, has spent the past few months consulting with officials from the State Administration of Taxation and the General Administration of Customs in order to obtain firm answers on how the changes will impact the businesses of clients.

Lehman, Lee & Xu has fielded countless enquiries from clients struggling to understand the changes. Edward Lehman, Managing Director of the firm and an old China hand, commented ※The introduction of these changes were made in a fairly typical fashion 每 by this, I mean that the government did not truly appreciate the confusion it would cause. They are only now starting to appreciate the level of uncertainty that has been created§.

Lehman, Lee & Xu has received clarification in relation to the future operation of the exemption. In particular, the GAC has advised the firm that the exemption will continue to apply for Customs special zones, including Free Trade Zones, Export Processing Zone and Bonded Port Areas. Presently, this information is only contained within an internal policy of GAC 每 it has not been made publicly available to date. It is not uncommon in China for important rules and regulations not to be made publicly available. ※It*s a feature of the practice of law in China that you become accustomed to very quickly. We are fortunate that we have strong relationships with the relevant government officials so that we can provide such information to our clients§, Lehman explains.

Ting Ting contributed to this article
...

China News 0 Comment July 2, 2009, 12:05 pm

New Contract Law Could Provide Additional Legal Recourse During Times of Economic Crisis

Published: July 1, 2009
AMCHAM NEWS

BEIJING 每 On May 12, 2009, the Supreme Court of the PRC issued the Interpretation (II) on Certain Issues concerning the Application of the Contract Law of the People's Republic of China (the Interpretation). The Interpretation, in Article 26, adds a significant development to the practice of Contract Law. Under the new law, a party may request to have the court terminate or amend a contract if any material change in circumstances occurs after a contract is formed, and is unforeseeable at the time the contract is entered into, but is not considered a commercial risk, and renders the continued performance by one party obviously unfair or frustrates the purpose of the contract. In short, Article 26 injects the doctrine of "change of circumstances" into PRC contract law.

It is interesting to note that the doctrine of change of circumstances was removed from the 1999 Contract Law of the PRC because of fears that the judiciary would have too much power in determining contract disputes. In the ensuing years, the absence of the doctrine produced many judicial determinations that were considered unjust. This trend was compounded with the financial crisis and the increasing number of instances where the change in circumstances was not contemplated by the parties at the time of the signing. Parties wishing to rely on the doctrine will have to show that (i) the change is not the result of a commercial risk; (ii) is not the result of force majuere; and (iii) was not foreseeable at the formation of the contract. Relevant to contracts impacted by the financial crisis are the first and third elements of the doctrine. Good lawyering will require distinguishing a legitimate change in circumstances from a common, albeit significant, commercial risk that the financial environment would remain conducive to a company's particular transactions. Furthermore, the specific change must be unforeseeable at the time of contracting--that is, it must be a development that is outside the normal, cyclical fluctuations of a market economy. Adding some ambiguity is the absence of a definition of "commercial risk." Aldo Settimio Boni de NobiliㄛForeign Legal Counselor at LehmanㄛLee & Xu, described the addition of the doctrine as a ※sea change in the practice of PRC Contract Law and extremely relevant given the current financial crisis.§

Ting Ting contributed to this article ...

China Law 0 Comment July 2, 2009, 11:34 am

BUSINESS LAUDS HALT TO GREEN DAM SOFTWARE〞〞Web filtering software has been put on ice

Stephen Chen, Al Guo and Agence France-Presse

Jul 02, 2009

The central government's surprise decision to delay the launch of its much maligned internet filtering software was warmly welcomed in business circles.

The American Chamber of Commerce said it was relieved to see the government delay an order that would have required all computers sold on the mainland to come with Green Dam-Youth Escort software from yesterday onwards.

"It's a positive development, which is consistent with international best practices and is good for Chinese consumers, the government and the business community," the chamber said.

But the chamber said easy access to pornography on the internet was a problem. "We recognise and continue to support the use of effective and responsible parental controls to protect children from inappropriate material on the internet."

While many believe the delay does in fact amount to a cancellation of the plan, the chamber added it would continue to monitor the situation.

Ed Black, president of the Washington-based Computer and Communications Industry Association, said the U-turn showed the influence US politicians had in Beijing. "This shows that when US trade officials get involved, they get results," he said.

Beijing says the software is designed to shield children within the world's largest online population from pornography, but trade and rights groups are concerned it is an attempt to tighten already strict controls on internet use.

While the software may be a poorly received proposal to clean up pornographic content, some Net users believe more should be done to remove pornographic content on the internet, although it should not be used as an excuse for controlling freedom of expression.

A British senior business executive working for a US high-tech company in Beijing told the Post he had concerns over whether Green Dam needed to be installed on all laptop computers.

"But as a father, I am disappointed. I think the internet should be regulated for children and I support the Chinese government's action while their western counterparts can do nothing about the porn."

Xiao Lijun , a psychiatrist at the People's Liberation Army (PLA) General Hospital in Beijing, said: "Cyberspace is like London during the industrial revolution. It is full of relentless venture capitalists and pornographic websites, and the atmosphere is constantly polluted. I'd like to invite Bill Gates to our mental centre to talk to young people whose lives were ruined by the cyber smog."

The drama over the Green Dam has had little effect on sales at one of the biggest personal computer retail centres in Beijing's Zhongguancun. A Post investigation found that computers for sale there were already loaded with the web-filtering software.

However, the Post interviewed about 30 personal computer retailers in three computer malls, and no retailers had installed the software into their products.

Tao Hongcui , a sales manager at a Lenovo (SEHK: 0992, announcements, news) chain store in Hai Long Plaza, said: "I heard about the Green Dam from the news, but Lenovo never told me what to do."

Source: South China Morning Post
...

China News 0 Comment July 2, 2009, 11:23 am

KENYAN AMBASSADOR MEETING WITH THE LEADING CHINESE LAW FIRM



Beijing〞China〞June 25, 2009. H.E. Mr. Julius L. Ole Sunkuli, Kenyan Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary invited the leading Chinese law firm Lehman, Lee & Xu on June 25 to visit the embassy offices in Beijing. Attorneys Andrew Lillis, Charles Chan and Lily Han met with the distinguished representative to introduce him to various aspects of Chinese Law.

http://blawg.lehmanlaw.com/english//uploadfiles/andrew_97786.jpg
Andrew Lillis
http://blawg.lehmanlaw.com/english//uploadfiles/cc_59919.jpg
Charles Chan
http://blawg.lehmanlaw.com/english//uploadfiles/lh_60767.jpg
Lily Han

The Kenyan Embassy has expressed high interest in services provided by Lehman, Lee, & Xu and its professionals since the successful meeting. Attorney Andrew Lillis is ※looking forward to assisting the embassy and the Kenyan citizens as they navigate Chinese laws on foreign investment, employment, and criminal matters

Lehman, Lee & Xu is a prominent Chinese law firm with offices in Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou and Shenzhen, along with foreign branch offices in Hong Kong, Macau, Mongolia and Chicago. The firm is managed by Mr. Edward Lehman, who is recognized as a leading expert on Chinese law with 20 years of practice experience in China. Lehman, Lee and Xu have a proud history of representing and offering legal services to foreign embassies and missions. As a result, and in combination with our business immigration team, we have achieved a recognized reputation among Beijing*s foreign community. To learn more about the firm, please visit http://www.lehmanlaw.com/ or contact us at mail@lehmanlaw.com. We would be more than happy to discuss with you in more detail.

-Published by Lehman, Lee & Xu, June 30, 2009
...

China News 0 Comment June 30, 2009, 6:11 pm

ANGER AND TEARS OVER COLLAPSE OF BUILDING

http://blawg.lehmanlaw.com/english//uploadfiles/00221917e13e0bb247dc06_48677.jpg

By Cao Li (China Daily)

Zhou Xuejun, 60, burst into tears and demanded a refund for her residential unit, which she says is unsafe after a nearby building collapsed in Shanghai's Minhang district.

"I can't live there," she cried as she pounded on a desk yesterday at the government reception center set up to deal with the accident. Standing behind her were hundreds of other angry homeowners, who spent millions on similar apartments priced at about 14,300 yuan ($2,090) per sq m.

Sheng Shunchang, a homeowner, said: "I want my money back and compensation for the price gap when I buy a new property, considering the soaring property prices."

The residents have bought units at 11 apartment blocks in the "Lotus Riverside" residential community, which is under construction on the eastern outskirts of Shanghai.

About 5:40 am on Saturday, one of those buildings fell on its side, almost intact. Pillars that were supposed to be buried deep under the earth were uprooted. A 28-year-old worker surnamed Xiao from Anhui province was killed as he collected his tools from the falling building.

Meanwhile, it has emerged that the developer, Shanghai Meidu Real Estate Company, has been working illegally because its construction license expired in 2004.

Zhang Suping, who lives across the river from the collapsed building, said his family and neighbors were woken at dawn by the falling building.

"I thought it was an earthquake and I ran downstairs, where I found other neighbors looking at the collapsed building," he said.

About 132 households across the street were evacuated, and 120 families moved to hotels paid for by the district government.

Shanghai mayor Han Zheng and Party secretary Yu Zhengsheng have ordered an investigation into the collapse.

An initial investigation found that the rest of the buildings are safe. "An investigation team formed by experts found that by 6 pm of Saturday, none of the other 10 buildings have tilt, shift or sank," the report says.

"And government departments have also found no leaking, cracks or moving of gas pipes, power wires or water pipes. They all meet the safety standards and chance of a secondary disaster is low."

However, Xu Jianping, who signed a contract for an apartment in one of those buildings only 10 days ago said: "I dare not move in."

Most residents are demanding refunds and compensation, but experts doubt whether their claims will be successful. Zhang Qi, a man in his 50s, said he wants his money back and compensation of an equal amount. Zhang and his new wife bought a property in February with a loan of 450,000 yuan.

"We are paying back the bank," he said. "I won't be able to afford another property nearby even if I get my money back."

Zhou Xuejun, another owner, said she was devastated because she had spent her life savings and borrowed 400,000 yuan to pay for the unit that she not dare to move into now.

Si Weijiang, a lawyer, said the refund and compensation claims would depend on the result of investigations.

"Buyers of the collapsed building will definitely get their money back, but it is not sure if others who still have their property will," he said.

"According to Chinese law, they cannot have their money back or be compensated unless it is proved that their properties are too dangerous to live in even after renovation.

"And as I see it, courts rarely support compensation claims for price gap in such situations."

An architect surnamed Meng with Shanghai Xian Dai Architectural Design Group told the Shanghai Morning Post: "The builder should have taken into consideration the riverside location and loose soil."

On Friday, some residents said they saw that the anti-flood bank of nearby Dianpu Lake was broken after days of rainfall.

It is also suspected that piled-up mud, about the height of 3 to 4 floors, which had been dug out from under the buildings had caused the ground tilt, and that this led to the bank break and the building collapse.

Sub-standard construction has been a major concern in the building sector, as the country rolls out enormous city expansions and finishes off vast infrastructure projects to keep pace with fast economic growth.

The Shanghai government yesterday ordered developers to ensure safety during the construction of all projects.

Source: China Daily...

China News 0 Comment June 30, 2009, 9:46 am

US TRADE AND CUSTOMS LAW FIRM MEETS WITH THE LEADING CHINESE LAW FIRM

http://blawg.lehmanlaw.com/english//uploadfiles/20090629_11038.jpg

(left to right)
John Lee, Sophie Tan, Jeffrey S. Neeley, Li Hong, Brian F. Walsh, Lily Han, Eric Langland

Brian F. Walsh and Jeffrey S. Neeley, attorneys from Barnes, Richardson & Colburn, visited Lehman Lee & Xu at its Beijing office on June 25, 2009.

On June 25, 2009, two attorneys from one of leading US trade law firms Barnes, Richardson & ColburnBarnes, Richardson & Colburn visited Lehman Lee & Xu. The two parties exchanged views on the issuance of recent US anti-dumping petitions against Chinese enterprises and exporters. The two firms look forward to cooperating with each other in the anti-dumping area.

※Our firm has been focused on trade and customs since it was established in 1919. We have a long history of working with Chinese enterprises on antidumping investigations. Furthermore, we have good relationships with the related US and Chinese authorities. § said Jeffrey S. Neeley.

Since the financial crisis and the economic downturn, more and more US enterprises submit anti-dumping petitions to US International Trade Commission and Department of Commerce against certain Chinese enterprises and exporters. Barnes, Richardson & Colburn is willing to cooperate with a Chinese domestic law firm in anti-dumping area. As one of the leading Chinese law firms, Lehman Lee & Xu has an active practice in the anti-dumping area.

The two parties discussed cooperation on antidumping investigations in the areas of steelㄛchemicals, paper, furniture and others. Furthermore, the two firms can also work together in the area of general corporate, foreign direct investment and intellectual property.

Barnes, Richardson & Colburn shared practical anti-dumping experience with Lehman Lee & Xu and the two parties also discussed the tips of handling anti-dumping cases.

The meeting was held in a friendly atmosphere. Both parties expressed their confidence for future cooperation.

Lehman, Lee & Xu, established in 1992, is at the forefront of international law practice in China. The firm has more than 200 lawyers in offices in Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou and Shenzhen, along with foreign branch offices in Hong Kong, Macau, Mongolia and Chicago. Over the past sixteen years, the firm has built a strong reputation in banking, foreign direct investment, mergers & acquisitions, international trade and dispute resolution. To learn more about the firm, please visit http://www.lehmanlaw.com/.

Barnes, Richardson & Colburn is one of the leading US trade and customs law firms.. Barnes, Richardson & Colburn*s practice centers on international trade regulation and customs law. Barnes, Richardson & Colburn began its practice in this area in 1919 and has focused on international trade matters since its establishment. To learn more about the firm, please visit http://www.barnesrichardson.com.

If you are interested in learning more about our service for anti-dumping legal service and/or other legal services, please give us a call at 86-10-8532-1919, or email us at elehman@lehmanlaw.com or mail@lehmanlaw.com, and we would be more than happy to discuss the program with you in more detail.
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China Law 0 Comment June 29, 2009, 2:50 pm

VETERAN LAWYER URGES COLLEAGUES TO FIGHT FOR THE RULE OF LAW

Vivian Wu
Jun 25, 2009

Zhang Sizhi may be 83, but he is still firmly on the front line of the battle between the mainland's lawyers and the law.

In recent months these battle lines have been laid bare to the public like never before thanks to the case of hotel waitress Deng Yujiao . Accused of murdering a cadre, her plight became a national cause fed by netizens impatient with officialdom and social injustice, and last week she was allowed to walk free, albeit with a guilty verdict.

Mr Zhang said Deng's case was proof that lawyers could play a bigger role in helping the public safeguard their rights, and pave the way for the rule of law. Describing lawyers as "dancers in irons" in a judicial system subject to Communist Party whims, Mr Zhang said they could still achieve more through heightened professionalism, political awareness and strategic thinking.

"Deng's case showed that lawyers could actually become an important force to educate the public with legal knowledge," said Mr Zhang. "By safeguarding the correct implementation of laws, they prove themselves the pillar for a nation's rule of law.

"They are not dissidents nor hostile forces, they are a bridge between the government and the public. By helping people solve their problems, they actually help drain off threats to social stability."

Mr Zhang's career has spanned everything from the establishment of the modern legal system in the 1950s to its total breakdown during the Cultural Revolution, and today's fight for an independent judiciary.

Deng fatally stabbed an official in early May after he reportedly demanded sexual services. As news of the case leaked out - thanks in part to a group of lawyers and bloggers - public sentiment came down firmly on her side. The local government in Badong county, Hubei , began to alter its story, and despite gagging the press, it succumbed to public pressure and allowed Deng to avoid a jail term. However, she was found guilty of using excessive force to defend herself.

"Under the current political system and judicial environment it is impossible for the court to find Deng, an ordinary woman, free of guilt based on the facts," Mr Zhang said.

"I believe the verdict was a result of instructions by senior officials. It was a wise action to soothe public anger, and such an outcome can be regarded as a limited victory for her."

The experiences of two Beijing lawyers, Xia Lin and Xia Nan , who travelled to Hubei to represent Deng, brought the hurdles facing lawyers into the spotlight.

After meeting Deng at a detention centre, Xia Lin said they had discovered crucial evidence - torn underwear - which showed she had been the victim of an attempted rape.

Concerned the evidence could be destroyed by police - a common practice - Mr Xia appealed for public help to track down the items. Local officials reacted by sacking the pair.

"There isn't any article of law that forbids lawyers publicising information about the legal case," Mr Zhang said. "Lawyers should grasp the chance to release information.

"More importantly, the media and the internet played a very important role in bringing public support."

Mr Zhang said throughout his career authorities had commonly prevented lawyers from defending clients in politically sensitive cases.

"Dealing with politically sensitive cases or cases with wide public attention, lawyers should try to avoid politicising them and giving authorities an excuse to cut down the legal channels," he said.

Source: South China Morning Post
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China Law 0 Comment June 25, 2009, 9:38 am

Leading Chinese Law Firm to meet with key Africa/China Intellectual Property Delegation

Beijing 每 Top 3 China Law firm, Lehman, Lee & Xu will host a delegation of leading IP experts from the African Intellectual Property Organization and the State Intellectual Property Office of the People*s Republic of China to discuss the development of intellectual property in China and future cooperation between the organizations.

※While the trade relationship between China and Africa has been growing exponentially it is clear that the cooperative nature of the relationship has increasingly been entering the legal and political sphere§ stated Ed Lehman, Managing Director of the law firm. ※This delegation is true sign of the increasing importance of intellectual property in a development and trade context§

The OAPI was established in 1962 to provide a body to oversee the patent laws in a number of former French colonies. The members of the organization are Cameroon Benin, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Central Africa, Congo, Cote d'Ivoire, Equatorial Guinea, Gabon, Guinea, Guinea Bissau, Mali, Mauritania, Niger, Senegal, Chad and Togo. ※Together these countries cover a large portion of Africa with a population of over one hundred million§ relays Ed. ※a coherent approach relating to Intellectual Property is a key requirement for successful globalization. Delegations such as this one are at the front line ensuring that the IP laws of different regions develop in a harmonious way§.
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China Culture 0 Comment June 24, 2009, 10:29 am

Leading mass tort Chinese law firm examines redress for Chinese passengers of doomed Air France flight

Lehman, Lee & Xu, a top 3 China law firm, is investigating possible legal recourse for the families of the 9 Chinese victims of the air crash that claimed the lives of 226 on June 1st. The firm, a pioneer in mass lawsuits in China, has been active in obtaining redress for the victims of the 2004 China Eastern Baotou Air disaster. "It is important that the families Chinese citizens are able to efficiently and transparently seek redress for their loss. We have been fighting for over 5 years for redress for the families of the 25 victims of the China Eastern crash in Baotou. We don*t want the Chinese victims of this crash to have to wait so long " states Ed Lehman, Managing Director and long time China resident.

The flight, traveling from Rio Di Janeiro in Brazil to Paris in France had passengers from 33 countries; a true representation of how globalized the world has become. With so many nationalities litigation can be expected for some time to come. "Although the plane was a French aircraft which crashed in international waters with an international passenger manifest" relays Ed. "This will mean litigation in a number of countries as the families of the victims of the tragedy seek legal recourse.

"The most important aspect of this case is to ensure that such an incident doesn't happen again. Holding the relevant parties responsible is a central part of this" states Ed. Our main aim here is to fight for ordinary families. There are a lot of unsavory plaintiffs lawyers out there whose only motivations are their potential fees while at the same time corporations are rushing to limit their liability in these cases. Our goal here is to help the victims of the families make an informed decision on how they want to proceed on a pro bono basis. We have the experience and will operate on a pro bono basis".

The firm has been instrumental in obtaining justice for the families of the victims of the China Easter Airlines crash in Inner Mongolia in 2004. "The case was wrongfully dismissed in the United States and the victims* families are still pursuing their rights through the Chinese courts. It has taken almost 5 years. We don't want the families of the victims of the Air France tragedy to wait that long. We hope that our experience in that case will help the families in this case"

Anyone interested in more information can contact lehmanlaw@lehmanlaw.com
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China Law 0 Comment June 23, 2009, 1:52 pm

ENGINEERS KIDNAPPED BY TALEBAN LAST YEAR SUE TELECOMS COMPANY

Kristine Kwok

Jun 23, 2009

Two mainland engineers who survived a kidnapping by the Taleban in Pakistan last year have sued a leading mainland telecommunications-equipment supplier.
Zhang Guo , 29, and Long Xiaowei , 28, are both unemployed and still recovering from injuries sustained in the ordeal.

They said Zhongxing Telecommunications Equipment (ZTE (SEHK: 0763)) had not fulfilled its responsibilities for what they had gone through since last August.

They also sued Jiangbo Group, a company based in Xian with which they signed contracts, for failing to pay their salaries and medical fees. ZTE outsourced the project in Pakistan to Jiangbo.

The pair were kidnapped by Pakistani Taleban militants last year in the notorious northwestern region of Dir, while returning from work to their dormitory.

Mr Zhang managed to escape in mid-October, while Mr Long injured his ankle during the attempt and was recaptured by the Taleban. He was released only in February.

"For ordinary men like us, such an experience is a nightmare that will remain in our memory forever," said Mr Zhang, who has suffered from post-traumatic stress disorder. But only when the two men returned to their homes in Shaanxi province did they realise that their salaries had not been properly paid and their medical fees were not being covered by Jiangbo.

Mr Long said Jiangbo had agreed to pay them on a monthly basis but after their kidnapping paid on a daily basis, which translated to a wage reduction of almost one-third.

A mandatory insurance fee of roughly 1,000 yuan (HK$1,135) each, which mainland law requires companies to sign for employees sent overseas, was deducted from their salaries, Mr Long said.

Mr Zhang said he had to cut short his stay in a hospital to treat his emotional problems because he could not afford the costs, which Jiangbo refused to pay.

Mr Long said he was advised by doctors to undergo an operation to remove a steel plate in his ankle months ago, "but Jiangbo would not even talk about this with me".

ZTE said in a statement that it would seek to resolve the problem rationally and would work to achieve consensus with all the parties involved. ZTE said it had been closely following the incident and the aftermath and had been urging Jiangbo to settle the issues with the two engineers.

Jiangbo was not available for comment yesterday.

Although Mr Zhang and Mr Long were not hired by ZTE, their lawyer Yang Jun said the company was sued as well because it still had liability, as the engineers went to Pakistan for its project.

ZTE reported a net profit of more than 1.6 billion yuan in 2008.

Source: South China Morning Post...

China Business 0 Comment June 23, 2009, 9:13 am

UK FRANCHISE FOCUSED LAW FIRM MEETS WITH THE LEADING CHINESE LAW FIRM



Jonathan Chadd, attorney from Leathes Prior visited Lehman Lee & Xu at Lehman Lee & Xu*s Beijing office, June 16, 2009.

On June 16, 2009, Jonathan Chadd, the Head of the Commercial Department at one of leading UK franchise law firms Leathes Prior Solicitors visited Lehman Lee & Xu. Two parties exchanged views on the most cutting-edge information and the most key issues in franchising practices.

※For our international approach, we need a great local partner to provide reliable ground services here in China to our clients. We understand that to have things done effectively and efficiently, you should find the right person from the very first beginning. I feel that you are the one we are looking for§ said Jonathan Chadd.

※I note that your firm has employment and data protection services. According to your introduction, we understand that your practice on these two areas are also franchising related which is really impressed. This kind of pinning-down strategy is really creative and we hope that we could adopt the same to improve ourselves.§ said Edward Lehman, the Managing Director of Lehman, Lee & Xu.

The meeting was hold in a friendly atmosphere. Both parties expressed their confidence for the future cooperation. ※We are confident that with Leathes Prior*s expertise in Franchising and Lehman, Lee & Xu*s professionals, we could better service our clients at the most competitive cost with best services and thus further expand our global reach.§ said Jonathan Chadd.

Lehman, Lee & Xu, established in 1992, is at the forefront of international law practice in China. The firm has more than 200 lawyers in offices in Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou and Shenzhen, along with foreign branch offices in Hong Kong, Macau, Mongolia and Chicago. Over the past sixteen years, the firm has built a strong reputation in banking, foreign direct investment, mergers & acquisitions, international trade and dispute resolution. To learn more about the firm, please visit http://www.lehmanlaw.com/.

Jonathan Chadd is one of the leading UK franchise law firms and is affiliated to the British Franchise Association. For more than 25 years they have been involved in assisting clients in the expansion of their business through franchising or licensing both in the UK and internationally. To learn more about the firm, please visit http://www.leathesprior.co.uk/.

If you are interested in learning more about our service for franchising and/or other legal services, please give us a call at 86-10-8532-1919, or email us at elehman@lehmanlaw.com or mail@lehmanlaw.com, and we would be more than happy to discuss the program with you in more detail.

-Published by Lehman, Lee & Xu, June 17, 2009
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China Culture 0 Comment June 19, 2009, 10:03 am

BEIJING SINGLES OUT GOOGLE IN ATTACK ON PORNOGRAPHY

Minnie Chan
Jun 19, 2009

Beijing's war to control internet content intensified as a government-backed internet watchdog yesterday condemned the mainland version of Google for disseminating online pornography and appealed for internet users to send in complaints about the website.
In an unusual move, the condemnation was broadcast nationwide on China Central Television's prime time news at 7pm. Meanwhile, a highly popular CCTV programme, Topics In Focus, aired an interview with youth experts, teachers and a university student about half an hour later, saying pornography links on Google China were distracting students from their studies.

The China Internet Illegal Information Reporting Centre has previously blacklisted groups of websites over obscene content, but this is the first time an internet giant was pinpointed for such a severe warning.

A notice posted on the centre's website said yesterday that it had complained twice to Google in the first four months of this year about the "pornographic and vulgar links" available through its search engine.

"The centre received public reports and proved that Google China has still kept large amounts of unhealthy information, including extremely vulgar and ugly pictures, videos and articles," said the watchdog, which is backed by the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology.

"Google China has not conducted the oversight required according to China's laws and regulations, and a large volume of foreign internet pornographic information has entered our borders through this website."

It urged Google to conduct a "thorough cleanup" of its mainland website and suggested relevant mainland authorities step in and punish the internet giant. "Google China has severely harmed the physical and psychological health of our youth," the centre said. "It goes against our social moral concept and harms the public interest."

In the popular current affairs talk show Topics In Focus, university student Gao Ye said a classmate of his could not concentrate after he started looking at pornographic websites using Google China's search engine. "After the government crackdown on these websites, [my classmate] stopped viewing these links and later recovered," Gao said.

The media campaign against Google China caused a furore in the internet community last night with many expecting a new storm of internet crackdowns. Many questioned why the government had targeted the mainland version of Google, since it had already blocked many sensitive websites.

The condemnation comes amid heightening tension between the government and the burgeoning netizen community over an order for computer manufacturers to provide software called Green Dam-Youth Escort. The software is officially to filter out pornography, but many see it as a government tool to control politically sensitive content.

Google's China headquarters did not comment yesterday. Beijing had shut 1,600 websites by the end of February, citing pornography.

Source: South China Morning Post
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China News 0 Comment June 19, 2009, 9:57 am

EUROPEAN LAWYERS NETWORK CHOOSES TO MEET WITH TOP THREE "RED CIRCLE" LAW FIRM IN CHINA'S CAPITAL

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(from left to right)

Eddie Hon, Sophie Tan, Lily Han, David Clifton, Suzanne Davies and Edward Lehman



European Lawyers Network (ELN) Attorneys from member firm Joelson Wilson LLP, David Clifton (Partner) and Suzanne Davies (Partner) visited Lehman Lee & Xu at Lehman Lee & Xu*s Beijing office, June 15, 2009.

On June 15, 2009, two attorneys on behalf of ELN and Joelson Wilson LLP visited Lehman Lee & Xu. Two parties discussed to build a strategic alliance to allow both firms' corporate finance and international securities practices to expand their global reach and to respond quickly and efficiently to the needs of PRC companies as they seek to enter foreign capital markets and engage in cross-border transactions. The two firms will maintain their separate identities and will serve as co-counsel on specific matters. Two parties believe, even under the present severe international economic situation, China's economy has survived the worst period and is now on its way to recovery. They also believe there will be more and more Chinese enterprises to go public in London exchange or AIM in the near future.

※Our domestic Chinese clients have recently become more active in seeking foreign investors to raise capital for their companies. We are confident that Joelson Wilson LLP*s strong corporate and securities practice will complement our firm's strengths in working with Chinese companies and our expertise in the PRC regulatory environment,§ said Edward Lehman, Managing Director of Lehman, Lee & Xu. ※Two firms can also work together in the area of general corporate, real estate, employment, licensing, gaming and as well as intellectual property. §

※We are looking for a reputable firm working together to provide the best, cost-competitive legal services to our clients," said David Clifton, Partner and licensing and gaming attorney of Joelson Wilson LLP.

The two parties consent to join hands and move forward with close cooperation.

Lehman, Lee & Xu, established in 1992, is at the forefront of international law practice in China. The firm has more than 200 lawyers in offices in Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou and Shenzhen, along with foreign branch offices in Hong Kong, Macau, Mongolia and Chicago. Over the past sixteen years, the firm has built a strong reputation in banking, foreign direct investment, mergers & acquisitions, international trade and dispute resolution. To learn more about the firm, please visit http://www.lehmanlaw.com/.

Joelson Wilson is a specialist business orientated law firm which has been based in the heart of London's West End for more than 50 years. Joelson Wilson has substantial experience in AIM listings and corporate transactions in the UK, including, but not limited to, mergers and acquisitions and foreign direct investment into the UK. To learn more about the firm, please visit http://www.joelsonwilson.com/.

If you are interested in learning more about our service for AIM compliance and/or other legal services, please give us a call at 86-10-8532-1919 to set up a no-fee consultation with Lily Han and Sophie Tan in our Beijing office, or email us at elehman@lehmanlaw.com or mail@lehmanlaw.com, and we would be more than happy to discuss the program with you in more detail.

-Published by Lehman, Lee & Xu, June 16, 2009...

Lehman Affairs 0 Comment June 16, 2009, 1:11 pm

FOREIGN INVESTMENT FREEFALL EASES

By Ding Qingfen (China Daily)
Updated: 2009-06-16 07:34

Foreign direct investment (FDI) has been in decline for eight months, but the size of the fall in May was smaller than the one in April, probably signaling an easing off.

Workers prepare for the opening of an international trade fair in Shanghai. [File photo]

In comparison with other economies, China is still poised to be among the first choices for global investors in the next five years, the Ministry of Commerce (MOFCOM) said.

According to the figures released by the ministry Monday, in May, the FDI dropped 17.8 percent compared to a year earlier - equaling $6.38 billion. The number of newly approved foreign enterprises contracted by 32 percent to 1,649.

The figures exclude those in the financial sector.

But May's performance was better than April's, when the FDI registered a negative growth of 22.5 percent.

Between January and May, the FDI fell by 20.4 percent year-on-year to $34.05 billion and newly approved foreign enterprises dropped by 33.8 percent to 7,890.

In the same period, foreign investment in China's central and western regions fell by 35.7 - more than the national average. Newly approved foreign enterprises fell 30.2 percent. For several years prior to the financial crisis, the regions had seen higher rates than the national average.

Yao Jian, a MOFCOM's spokesman, noted the central and western regions' sharp decline: "The coastal areas have the advantage of having gathered a much larger number of foreign investment enterprises in the last three decades."

Encouraged by confidence from global investors in China's 4 trillion yuan stimulus plan, the "decline in FDI will probably be slowing during the rest of the year," predicted Li Jianfeng, macro-economics and trade analyst with Shanghai Securities, a domestic brokerage.

"There is a good chance that the FDI will register a positive growth in the last quarter, given the low reference point in 2008," he added.

During the first quarter, the FDI decline showed some signs of bottoming out. But in April, the performance went down again by 22.5 percent, compared with a decline of 9.5 percent in March.


At the same time, the International Monetary Fund predicted China's GDP would grow by 6.7 percent this year, 1.3 percentage points lower than the Chinese government's target, but higher than the 5.25 percent of India and 5 percent for Vietnam, two countries vying for FDI.

The stimulus plan is having an effect, said Yao, who pointed out that retail volume rose to 4.88 trillion yuan in the first five months, up by 15 percent year-on-year.

Yao predicted that in 2009, China's FDI will contract by an annualized 20 percent in contrast to last year's growth of 27.65 percent.

SourceㄩChina Daily...

China Business 0 Comment June 16, 2009, 10:03 am

Apology for TV anchor accused of being a spy

Kelly Chan
Jun 15, 2009

The Peking University associate professor who accused a China Central Television presenter of disloyalty has apologised on his weblog, writing that he had not said she was a spy for Taiwan, only that she was "leaking secrets".

Zhou Yijun , of the School of Journalism and Communication, also said in his entry on Saturday that he did so only as a metaphor in an article about students cheating on the National College Entrance Exam.

But Professor Zhou refused to say where he obtained the news and the details about Fang Jing .

"I will keep my mouth shut. Please don't keep calling me," he wrote. "Even if I am being irresponsible, I only said [Fang] was leaking secrets instead of being a spy."

The Oriental Guardian, based in Nanjing , reported that Fang had applied to host Defence Watch, a panel discussion programme on military issues, to gather intelligence.

Fang said in a video interview with Web portal Sina.com: "I have no reason to betray my motherland [and] sell my soul.

"I have unlimited love and loyalty to the country and its people ... The truth will prove it all."

Fang, 38, said she heard of the "groundless rumour" in mid-May and read it in Professor Zhou's blog on Thursday after a colleague had her about it. "I was shocked when I read the news. I can't understand why a public figure would spread rumours in public."

The Southern Metropolis News reported that Professor Zhou on Friday sent an e-mail to newspapers saying he was not in a position to give more details. "Wait for the information from the government, court and CCTV."

Fang, however, said no one from any governmental department had approached her.

She said she would not talk to interviewees, mostly military experts, before the cameras were turned on because she wanted to have a real interview with them. She said she obtained military knowledge via "open channels" like everyone else.

"For example, if we talk about F-16 flights today, [I would] google it."

Source: South China Morning Post
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China Culture 0 Comment June 15, 2009, 9:50 am

China ※critical§ for the future of General Motors

As American consumers have tightened their purses in recent months, moving away from the new car industry, automakers are turning to international markets to keep afloat. Most recently, GM announced plans to focus on the Chinese auto market in hopes that the thriving industry will revive the troubled company.

According to GM, the Chinese auto industry was the leading market in the world for the first half of 2009. The company also maintains that domestic sales of GM vehicles in China have risen considerably for each of the first five months of 2009, as compared to 2008. By the end of 2008, GM claimed a 12% market share in China, and hopes to increase that figure over the next 5 years.

As economic development spreads throughout China, more people will be able to afford to purchase cars. The overwhelming population throughout the nation is indicative of the potential that large companies hope to tap in the emerging Chinese markets. While GM has been unsuccessful in securing a top-spot in the American auto market for many years, the company*s new restructuring plan sets realistic goals for the future. GM management hopes to produce more efficient vehicles that will appeal to thrifty spenders in the US, and plans to introduce new and improved vehicles worldwide to stimulate global sales. Many people believe this is a last hope for GM, but if the company*s reported numbers are correct, the Chinese market will play a substantial role in revitalizing the auto industry.


Source: China Daily (via lawinfochina.com)
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China Business 0 Comment June 12, 2009, 5:24 pm

Re: Race to China*s 3G Mobile Market, Trademark Dispute Gives iPhone Competitors a Leg Up

Despite the misconception that China does not have effective IP laws or that the laws are not adequately enforced, the first to file rule for registration has shown otherwise for Apple*s iPhone. I was surprised to learn that despite having registered their computer software and hardware〞Apple failed to register their mobile phone trademark. Taiwanese manufacturer Hanwag registered the iPhone trademark forcing iPhone to either use another name or negotiate to gain entry into the market. However, this sort of enforcement seems to be formalistic and a bit removed from the reality and purpose preventing intellectual property appropriation: adhering to the letter of the law in this case seems to be a difference without distinction. And regardless of my personal sentiment*s about iPhone, if it does not qualify for the Well-Known Trademark exception for the first to file rule, what would?

Senayt...

China Business 0 Comment June 12, 2009, 3:40 pm

China Sees Potential in Trade Litigation

Trade disputes with China have been commonplace since its accession to the WTO in 2001. Chinese manufacturers are consistently the target of antidumping and countervailing duties (AD/CVD) from trading partners like the US and EU. For years, Chinese manufacturers, taking their cue from the Ministry of Commerce, have decided largely to forego litigation and settle disputes outside of court. Recently, however, due to the financial crisis and China's prominent new role in the global economy, the Ministry of Commerce is starting to challenge AD/CVD and other safeguard measures at the WTO. An illustration of this newly found desire to counter claims of unfair trade practices is China's challenge to US antidumping duties on steel pipes, which is currently at the expert panel stage.

Perhaps an even more drastic departure from previous policy is China's decision to initiate its own trade litigation against notoriously litigious trading partners like the United States. Illustrative of this new trend is its recent challenge to US health restrictions that effectively ban the importation of Chinese poultry. China's decision to pursue trade litigation signals several shifts taking place in its approach toward international trade. First, China is seeing the WTO dispute settlement system as less of a restriction on its economic aims and more of an avenue to pursue its goals. Instead of developed countries using litigation to stymie the flow of imports from China, litigation can be used to secure access to those markets by proscribing illegal trade barriers. Second, China will no longer play the role of a sheepish trading partner. When claims of unfair trade practices are made against its industries, China will defend the practices in court. When illegal barriers are erected to its imports, China will challenge those barriers in court. Several keen observers have noted that China does not possess the legal infrastructure--Chinese WTO trained attorneys--to accommodate the rise in trade litigation. For the short term, at least, China will continue to rely on WTO-savvy American firms to handle the bulk of its international trade law workload.

Eric Langland...

China Business 0 Comment June 12, 2009, 3:30 pm

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