July has already been a busy and exciting time for the Asia Team. We kick-started the month with the launch of the first FT Innovative Lawyers Report for the Asia-Pacific region, ‘Global Flows: Lawyers in Asia Pacific’, co-organised by the Law Society, the Financial Times and RSG Consulting. Leading practitioners from India’s AZB & Partners, Singapore’s ZICOlaw and China’s King & Wood Mallesons as well as UK partners from Linklaters, Freshfields and Allen & Overy shared their perspectives on how they practise in Asia-Pacific, and provided valuable insight into what deeper and broader connectivity in a globalised world will mean to them.

This was followed by the launch of our new guide to ‘Doing Legal Business in England and Wales’ at an event for overseas lawyers at the International Festival for Business in Liverpool. Since our last newsletter, we have also hosted incoming visits from the region, including a delegation of corporate lawyers from across China and a delegation from the Shanghai Bar Association, led by Vice President Zhou Tianping.

There are more upcoming events and opportunities in the Asia region that may be of interest to you, including trade missions to China and Korea and International Lawyers Training Programmes in Singapore and China later this year. Below are further details of all our upcoming events and opportunities in Asia.

We offer a range of international business opportunities, including market insight and essential contacts in the UK and Asia, and work to support the international legal profession by tracking and intervening on human rights abuses against lawyers in the Asia region. So please do get in touch to find out how the Asia team can help you and your business – we are happy to help.

We look forward to hearing from you and seeing you at future events.

With best wishes,

The Asia team

International practice update

Malaysia opens for legal business

The Malaysian legal services market is now officially open to foreign lawyers and law firms. The Malaysian Attorney General announced that the Legal Profession (Amendment) Act 2012 and additional amendments came into effect on 3 June 2014.

Fiji now a recognised jurisdiction for Qualified Lawyers Transfer Scheme (QLTS)

The Qualified Lawyers Transfer Scheme (QLTS) is the fast-track route by which lawyers from other jurisdictions can be admitted by the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) as solicitors of England and Wales. Fiji now joins China, Hong Kong, India, Japan, Malaysia, Nepal, New Zealand, Pakistan, The Philippines, Singapore, Sri Lanka and Taiwan as an eligible jurisdiction. Click here for a full list.

New guidebook for Asian lawyers: ‘Doing legal business in England and Wales’

For Asian lawyers thinking about either becoming solicitors of England and Wales or opening up offices of their law firm in the UK, the Law Society’s new guidebook, ‘Doing legal business in England and Wales’, provides an essential overview of all the initial key questions. This includes a summary of the UK legal system and the legal profession in England and Wales and guidance on available options for foreign lawyers and information on complying with UK business laws and regulations. Members of the Law Society of England and Wales and international lawyers in other jurisdictions can access a free copy by registering with the International Division. For a preview click here. Contact the Asia team for more information.

Law Society news and opportunities

Register for our training programmes in Singapore (September 2014) and China (October 2014)

The Law Society is taking its International Lawyers Training Programme (ILTP) to Asia this autumn with sessions in Singapore on 29-30 September 2014, Beijing on 10 October 2014 and Shanghai on 13 October 2014. Do not miss your chance to develop your professional skills with quality CPD-accredited courses delivered by leading trainers. Qualified lawyers from all jurisdictions are welcome. Contact the Asia team for more information.

UK legal services mission to China in October 2014

The Lord Mayor of London, Fiona Woolf, will visit China between 8-15 October 2014. The promotion of UK legal services will be high on the agenda and the Law Society of England and Wales is developing a full programme of events and activities in Beijing, Shanghai and Shenzhen. For the first time, the Law Society will be launching our training programme for international lawyers in China. We will also arrange various business networking receptions and seminars, as well as work with the British Embassy on a range of high level meetings with Chinese officials.

We will be promoting the expertise of the English legal profession and are particularly looking at the following areas of expertise: intellectual property, low carbon technology, green financing, insurance and maritime services. If you have experience in any of these areas and are interested in being a part of the trade mission please email the Asia team. Please also get in touch if you’d like to discuss your work in China more broadly and how the Asia team might assist you.

English Law Week in Korea, October 2014

Interested in learning more about market opportunities in Korea? With the final stage of Korea’s market liberalisation under the EU-Korea Free Trade Agreement due in the next 18-24 months and the potential for continued improvements in UK-Korea trade, cooperation between English and Korean lawyers is likely to be more fruitful than ever. With this in mind, the Law Society is organising a legal services trade mission to promote English law and the English legal profession.

We are working with our counterparts in the Korean Bar Association and the British Embassy to organise a range of seminars and targeted business networking events, from Monday 27-29 October. Particular areas of interest include maritime, construction, intellectual property and international arbitration. To find out more about the trade mission and to discuss your possible involvement please get in touch.

External events and opportunities

Please contact the named organiser directly for further details

Learn about opportunities in South West China – 21 July, London, UK

British Expertise are holding an event with Alastair Morgan, HM Consul-General, Guangzhou, China, which will provide a political and economic update on China and highlight developing opportunities for UK companies in his region. Visit the British Expertise website for more information.

Global Islamic Finance Forum & UK Dialogue Platform – 2- 4 September, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

This year’s Global Islamic Finance Forum (GIFF) will be held from 2- 4 September in Kuala Lumpur. The GIFF is an excellent occasion for British companies to explore opportunities in the global and Malaysian Islamic finance industry. Attendees will also have the unique chance to learn more about the liberalisation of Malaysia’s legal services market and how this will enhance the country’s Islamic finance market. Visit our website for more information and contact details.

International Malaysian Law Conference – 24-26 September, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

The International Malaysian Law Conference is an ideal opportunity for solicitors and law firms who wish to explore their options in the newly liberalised Malaysian legal services market. The Malaysian Bar Council’s flagship conference is one of the most important legal events in Malaysia. For more information visit our website.

UKTI grants available for the International Bar Association Conference 2014 – 19-24 October, Tokyo, Japan

The annual International Bar Association (IBA) Conference, the premier event for international lawyers, will take place from 19 to 24 October 2014 in Tokyo, Japan. With around 7000 international lawyers expected to attend, this year’s event will feature a wide array of substantive sessions, workshops and panels. For further information on the conference and registration please visit the IBA Conference website. The deadline for early bird registration is Friday 1 August 2014. If you are attending the IBA for the first time or are considering doing so and would like UKTI support, UKTI have a number of market visit grants available for eligible London based participants. For further information email UKTI’s International Trade Adviser, Elizabeth Fehnrich elizabethfehnrich@uktilondon.org.uk.

The Law Society of England and Wales will host a networking reception, a seminar on Corporate Governance (with the Japan Federation of Bar Associations) and a conference on International Sports Law (with the Dai-Ichi Tokyo Bar Association). If you are attending the conference and would like to be added to the invitation list for any of the events please email the Asia team.

Human rights work

Hear about law, gender and religion in Pakistan from former President of the Supreme Court Bar Association of Pakistan – 30 July, London, UK

Asma Jahangir, advocate of the Supreme Court of Pakistan and former President of the Supreme Court Bar Association of Pakistan, will discuss women’s rights and the tension between law and religious freedom at the Law Society on 30 July 2014. She was previously the United Nations Special Rapporteur on Freedom of Religion or Belief (2004-10) and the Chairperson of the Human Rights Commission of Pakistan. Click here for more information.

Annual human rights conference: business and human rights – 10 December, London, UK

This conference will cover a wide range of topics associated with business and human rights including modern slavery, litigating the global case and whether a treaty on business and human rights is the way forward. The conference will take place at the Law Society, Chancery Lane on 10 December 2014. Click here for more information