The US subsidiary of Ranbaxy Laboratories, India’s biggest pharmaceuticals group, has pleaded guilty to felony charges related to drug safety and will pay $500m in what the US Department of Justice called the largest such settlement to date with a generic drug manufacturer.
It lifts a cloud hanging over Ranbaxy for the past eight years. But it is still not clear when the company will be able to resume exports to the US from its two factories at the centre of the scandal, which have been at a virtual standstill since 2008. Continue reading »
Thursday’s Kiobel v Royal Dutch Shell ruling by the US Supreme Court provides much-needed clarification about the scope of an obscure US law utilised by a growing number of claimants from emerging economies.
The Kiobel case alleged that Shell was complicit in human rights abuses committed in Nigeria in the late 1990s, when activists protesting against the oil industry were hanged by the government. The case was unusual in seeking redress in US courts for a case involving a non-US company and non-US claimants for a crime committed in a non-US jurisdiction. How is this possible? Continue reading »
Chinese sportswear company Qiaodan has long been seen as a copycat for its use of a name and imagery connected to basketball legend Michael Jordan. But in the domain of trademark law, it is nothing if not original in an increasingly bitter fight with Jordan. Continue reading »
By David Mitchell of BDO
Africa is experiencing rapid economic growth and infrastructure development. In addition to the huge investment programmes, there is a strong pipeline of M&A activity and an increasingly sophisticated and growing financial and professional services industry.
With a strong demand for more British and international lawyers to go and work in Africa to help facilitate this, the opportunity for lawyers and accountants at any stage in their careers, whether newly qualified or senior partners, has never been better. Continue reading »
By curious coincidence, Russia is prosecuting a dead man on the 60th anniversary of Stalin’s death. Just days after the commemoration of the Soviet leader, the trial is due to start on of Sergei Magnitsky, the lawyer who died in a Moscow jail after accusing officials of fraud.
It perverts the law in a way which even the ruthless Georgian did not attempt. But Stalin would have appreciated the idea: like his show trials, it is a demonstration of power, not of justice. Many foreign investors will say this has nothing to do with them. They are wrong. It has. Continue reading »
Anton Ivanov, SAC chairman. Photo: Bloomberg
By Jeffrey Sullivan and Simon Maynard of Allen&Overy
The Russian Supreme Arbitration Court (SAC) – Russia’s Supreme Court – has crystallised long-held doubts about the enforceability under Russian law of what are known as “optional arbitration clauses.”
Its ruling means that parties which have until now been required to bring any claims under a contract to international arbitration may have to go instead to the Russian courts. Companies with such contracts would do well to read the fine print again – and consider renegotiating deals to get rid of optional clauses. Continue reading »
Allen & Overy has become the latest international law firm to boost its presence in Turkey - by establishing a tie-up with a Turkish firm.
A&O said on Friday it had signed an exclusive association with Gedik & Eraksoy in Istanbul to allow clients to access local law expertise in Turkey. Continue reading »
By Andrew Cadman and Bridgett Majola
There has recently been a great deal of hype regarding the opportunity that Africa presents to foreign investors seeking high returns no longer available in more developed markets.
Part of the attraction is often based on the assumption that the regulatory environments of African countries are unsophisticated or non-existent meaning that deals are easier to implement from a regulatory perspective. Whilst it is true that there was a time when doing business in Africa was relatively easy from a regulatory perspective, this situation is rapidly changing, particularly in the area of competition law and, more specifically, merger control. Continue reading »
Practising corporate law in an authoritarian, Communist state where rules and regulations change all the time, implementation is uneven and corruption is rife is no easy task. Especially when economic turbulence has restricted the flow of international deals, as it has in Vietnam.
But Allen & Overy, one of the world’s biggest law firms by global revenues, clearly likes a challenge. The firm confirmed this week that it will open offices in Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City later this year as it seeks to capitalise on long-term growth in Vietnam and the wider region. Continue reading »
The proposal by Hong Kong’s securities watchdog to create an explicit civil and criminal liability for investment bank sponsors of new listings should be welcomed.
Yet, even if the Securities and Futures Commission gets what it wants – and that is a big ‘if’, since the proposals require a change to Hong Kong’s legislation – sponsors have little to fear. Continue reading »
One of the thousands of jokes currently doing the rounds in Budapest goes like this. Qustion: what’s the formula for a doctorate in Hungary?
Answer: PhD = Ctrl+A + Ctrl+C + Ctrl+V
It refers to the scandal surrounding Hungary’s president, Pal Schmitt. The 69-year-old former Olympic fencer resigned on Monday amidst a storm of protest over claims he had plagiarised almost 200 pages of his 215-page doctoral thesis on the Olympic Games. Continue reading »
Egypt’s emergency laws will be partially lifted from Wednesday, the first anniversary of the start of the country’s uprisings against former President Hosni Mubarak.
But Field Marshal Hussein Tantawi, the head of Egypt’s ruling military council, added that exceptions would be retained for “incidents of thuggery,” without elaborating further. Continue reading »
The merger of Chinese law firm King & Wood and Australia’s Mallesons Stephen Jacques— approved by partners last month and announced officially this week— hasn’t come without some hiccups.
John Shi, Mallesons’ chief representative in Beijing since 2004, and another partner are leaving for a rival firm. And other competitors may be interested in poaching more of their former colleagues. Continue reading »
British and American law firms operating in eastern Europe have long loomed large over their local rivals.
Not only have they had offered incomparably more experience and wider international reach, they have simply been bigger, with more partners, more support staff and more specialists. Not any more – On Tuesday Egorov Puginsky Afanasiev & Partners, a leading Russian law firm, and Kiev-headquartered Magisters announced they are merging to form the “largest” law group in the former Soviet Union. Continue reading »
As Indians compare their investment climate to their neighbour and rival China, they love to tout their country’s rule of law – and British-style justice system – as one of their main advantages.
But its shortcomings have been highlighted last week by a tragic case that had been winding its way through the legal system since 1978, after a young Australian swimming champion was left a quadriplegic after an accident in a hotel swimming pool. Continue reading »