China today

Association promotes training for growing international role

2017-08-10 08:35:00 (Beijing Time)         Chinadaily.com.cn

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More than 300 lawyers from 100 law firms have received training that will enable them to deal with cross-border lawsuits, according to the All China Lawyers Association.

The legal professionals will handle transnational litigation cases involving overseas investments, multinational mergers and acquisitions, IPR protection, safeguarding oceanic and space interests, and antitrust and anti-dumping cases.

In recent years, many Chinese businesses have expanded overseas and engaged in multinational mergers and acquisitions, leading to a rise in the number of cross-border legal disputes.

The training of lawyers has "lagged far behind the practical needs required for social and economic development", said Jiang Junlu, deputy director of the association's international commission.

To help plug the gap, the association has invested 4 million yuan ($642,000) annually since 2014 to provide the necessary legal training.

Local lawyers' associations have also established databases to evaluate their members' educational backgrounds, proficiency in English and professional training.

"Every year, we will identify promising lawyers recommended by local lawyers' associations, who will receive special, practical training in Chinese universities. Then, we will recommend the most promising lawyers to institutions or large firms overseas for further training and communications," Wang said.

In August 2015, Xie Xianghui, a senior lawyer with the Grandall Law Firm in Shenzhen, Guangdong province, participated in a 15-day special training program in Beijing about cross-border lawsuits.

After passing an exam, Xie was selected to travel to the United States to study at law schools and gain practical experience of working in US legal practices.

"The visit helped me gain a lot of practical experience," Xie said. "It will be invaluable when I have to deal with litigation involving US companies. I also learned how to manage legal risks and improve the quality of service."

Wang Zhengzhi, senior partner at the Beijing Globe-Law Law Firm, said: "The priority is to cultivate a team of lawyers specializing in cross-border lawsuits. We must pay attention to training talented personnel and encourage them to be active in international forums to communicate and share their experiences with our competitors, and improve their practical abilities."

According to the lawyers' association, China has nearly 300,000 lawyers working in more than 20,000 law firms, but only about 30,000 of them deal with transnational litigation.

(China Daily 08/10/2017 page6)