Asian Legal Business is proud to present the ALB Vietnam In-house Legal Summit 2024 happening this 26th September in Ho Chi Minh City. Brace yourself for a remarkable lineup of industry experts and in-house legal & compliance professionals as they discuss the latest regulatory reforms, legal trends and current priorities for general counsel this year. OVERVIEW FOR SPONSORSHIP OPPORTUNITIES, YOU MAY REACH OUT TO: Amantha Chia / (+65) 6973 8258 FOR SPEAKING AND PROGRAM INQUIRIES, PLEASE CONTACT: Amruta Manjrekar / (+91) 977 3438471 FOR MORE INFORMATION, KINDLY VISIT *Complimentary passes are available exclusively to in-house counsels and general counsels from corporations only. Participants are requested to apply to attend. All confirmed participants will be notified via email within a week after application. ALB reserves the right to cancel any registrations at any time if they do not meet the profile stated above. Representatives from law firms, legal service providers and independent lawyers/consultants are welcome to contact our sponsorship team. 26 SEPTEMBER HO CHI MINH CITY, VIETNAM ALB VIETNAM IN-HOUSE LEGAL SUMMIT 2024 PROUDLY PRESENTED BY BENEFITS OF ATTENDING • Deep dive into crucial legal topics • Expert insights on emerging trends • Networking with industry leaders • Forge valuable connections within the legal landscape TOPIC HIGHLIGHTS • Unveiling The New Law on Protection of Consumers’ Rights 2023 • Decoding Decree No.13: Highlights on Personal Data Protection • The ESG Essentials: ‘Ambition to Action’ • How 2024 is shaping up for M&As? • Insights into Law on Electronic Transactions 2023 (‘’New Law’’) • Compliance in Spotlight – Navigating the Next Wave • International Arbitration & Dispute Resolution Dynamics for 2024 • AI Excellence: Paving the Way to the Smart Future • Strategic Insights: ’A Success Formula’ for Modern GCs *Topics are subject to change

1 ASIAN LEGAL BUSINESS – APRIL 2024 WWW.LEGALBUSINESSONLINE.COM COVER STORY 18 ALB Employer of Choice 2024 Law firms were already grappling with the challenge of keeping their members, particularly the younger generation, engaged, motivated, and committed. However, the advent of a groundbreaking new technology, in the form of generative artificial intelligence (Gen AI), has added another significant variable. Firms say that while it will be important to integrate Gen AI in a safe and impactful manner, effective talent retention is rooted in a humancentric approach that prioritises care, understanding, and communication. By Sarah Wong FEATURES 14 Arrested development When Indonesia established a carbon trading mechanism last year, the move was welcomed across the board. However, a lack of strong implementing regulations, regulatory uncertainty, and insufficient business incentives have combined to ensure slow-going for the country’s carbon trading market. 16 Different strokes As the transformative era of Gen AI continues to redefine creativity, it is also igniting debates on copyright laws and ethical boundaries. And as legal battles over intellectual property intensify, courts in different jurisdictions are taking unique approaches to the larger questions surrounding ownership of art and content created by this new technology. 28 Final frontier Government-led efforts to improve regulatory and financial barriers in India’s space sector are rapidly creating an important new market for the country’s law firms, which are looking at increased work for their M&A, private capital investment, project finance, intellectual property and technology lawyers. 30 Bright spot With China sputtering out of global investors’ sights, buyout firms sitting atop a record amount of unused capital increasingly turned to Southeast Asia. Lawyers in Indonesia and Malaysia share what they have seen in the local private equity markets and the factors driving the growth in investor interest. 32 One country, one law The codification of contract and civil principles under the Civil Transaction Law is a historic first for Saudi Arabia. Lawyers in the country believe the law will create a sophisticated and internationalised legal market, as more global capital pours in. 36 Rein in the robots When it comes to generative artificial intelligence (Gen AI), China is leading the world in both regulation formulation and judicial practice. Experts share with ALB the latest moves by Chinese regulators and courts. BRI EFS 3 The Briefing 4 Forum 7 Q&A 8 Explainer 9 Deals 10 Appointments CONTENTS 30 Bright spot Image: Olivier Le Moal/

2 ASIAN LEGAL BUSINESS – APRIL 2024 WWW.LEGALBUSINESSONLINE.COM Asian Legal Business is available by subscription. Please visit for details. Asian Legal Business has an audited average circulation of 11,402 as of 30 September 2016.Copyright is reserved throughout. No part of this publication can be reproduced in whole or part without the express permission of the editor. Contributions are invited, but copies of work should be kept, as Asian Legal Business can accept no responsibility for loss. MCI (P) 004/02/2024 issn 0219 – 6875 KDN PPS 1867/10/2015(025605) Thomson Reuters Alice @ Mediapolis, 29 Media Circle, #09-05, Singapore 138565 / T (65) 6775 5088 10/F, Cityplaza 3, Taikoo Shing, Hong Kong / T (852) 3762 3269 CARE IN A TIME OF CHANGE The past few years have seen incredible upheavals in the way we work, but one thing we know for sure is that there is an imperative need for law firms across Asia to prioritize their associates’ welfare and professional development. As our Employer of Choice highlights, law firms need foster a supportive and enriching environment for their legal talent. Associates form the backbone of any law firm, driving its success through their dedication, expertise, and commitment to excellence. However, the legal profession is renowned for its demanding nature, often subjecting associates to rigorous work schedules, high-pressure environments, and intense client expectations. Creating a positive workplace culture is the cornerstone of becoming an employer of choice. Law firms must cultivate an atmosphere of respect, collaboration, and inclusivity, where associates feel valued and motivated to perform at their best. Moreover, nurturing the wellbeing of associates is not just a moral obligation but also a strategic investment. Providing resources for physical and mental health, implementing work-life balance initiatives, and offering avenues for stress relief are essential components of a supportive work environment. Mentorship is another indispensable aspect of professional growth within law firms. Seasoned partners and senior associates must actively engage in guiding and nurturing the next generation of legal talent. Through mentorship programs, junior associates can benefit from valuable insights, constructive feedback, and opportunities for skill development, ultimately fostering a culture of continuous learning and advancement. As we showcase Asia’s leading law firms in this issue, we urge the legal community to recognize the significance of prioritizing the needs of associates. By championing a culture of support, mentorship, and wellbeing, law firms can not only attract top talent but also cultivate a resilient and thriving workforce poised for long-term success in an ever-evolving legal landscape. RANAJIT DAM Managing Editor, Asian Legal Business, Thomson Reuters HEAD OF LEGAL MEDIA BUSINESS, ASIA & EMERGING MARKETS Amantha Chia MANAGING EDITOR Ranajit Dam ASIA JOURNALIST Sarah Wong ASIA WRITER Nimitt Dixit RANKINGS AND SPECIAL PROJECTS EDITOR Wang Bingqing COPY & WEB EDITOR Rowena Muniz SENIOR DESIGNER John Agra TRAFFIC/CIRCULATION MANAGER Rozidah Jambari SALES MANAGERS Hiroshi Kaneko Japan, Korea (81) 3 4520 1192 Jonathan Yap Indonesia, Singapore (65) 6973 8914 Krupa Dalal India, Middle East, Singapore (91) 22 6189 7087 Romulus Tham Southeast Asia (65) 6973 8248 Simon Wan Hong Kong (852) 3462 7730 Steffi Yang South and West China (86) 010 5669 2041 Steven Zhao China Key Accounts (86) 10 6627 1360 Yvonne Cheung China Key Accounts, Hong Kong and Korea (852) 2847 2003 SENIOR EVENTS MANAGER Julian Chiew SENIOR EVENTS MANAGER, AWARDS Tracy Li

3 ASIAN LEGAL BUSINESS – APRIL 2024 WWW.LEGALBUSINESSONLINE.COM THE BRIEFING: YOUR MONTHLY NEED-TO-KNOW GLOBAL M&A PICKS UP IN Q1 (Reuters) Mergers and acquisitions (M&A) bounced back in the first quarter after a downbeat 2023, thanks to the return of mega deals, cheering investment bankers and lawyers waiting for a pick-up. Total M&A volumes globally climbed 30 percent to about $755.1 billion, according to the most recent data from Dealogic. The number of transactions worth more than $10 billion jumped to 14, compared with five during the same period last year. Investment bankers said boardroom confidence for dealmaking has improved on the back of strong earnings, potential interest rate cuts this year and an ebullient market. “When you see larger deals happening, it’s a much more direct sign of the returning health of the market, because boards and CEOs, due to the nature of large deals, are going to be more conservative when they approach them,” said Blair Effron, co-founder of investment bank Centerview Partners. “We do think that the activity that we see today is heading in the right direction.” U.S. M&A volumes surged 59 percent to $431.8 billion. European deals jumped 64 percent, while Asia-Pacific volumes slumped 40 percent. 7 AFTER FLURRY OF LARGE DEALS 7% - Fall in global IPO volumes year-on-year, according to research from EY, which said that proceeds were up 7 percent. A total of 287 deals raised $23.7 billion worldwide. A recent report from Fairfax Associates shows a significant uptick in U.S. law firm merger activities in the first quarter of 2024, with a particular focus on small and midsize firms. The consultancy firm tracked 20 completed mergers during this period. This represents a 25 percent increase over the 16 mergers reported in the first quarter of 2023, signalling a robust start to the year for law firm consolidations. According to Fairfax, one of the standout mergers of the quarter was the combination of Clevelandbased Ulmer & Berne, with 175 attorneys, merging with St. Louisbased Greensfelder Hemker & Gale, which has a roster of 140 lawyers, to form UB Greensfelder. Other notable mergers include the union of Atlanta’s Kilpatrick Townsend & Stockton with Chicago’s HMB Legal Counsel, Kansas City’s Spencer Fane with Salt Lake City’s Snow Christensen & Martineau, and Buchanan Ingersoll & Rooney’s merger with RatnerPrestia. U.S. LAW FIRM MERGERS SURGE IN Q1 OF 2024 Median net profit margins for UK firms in 2023, down from 22.3 percent in 2022. Firms with turnover below 2 million pounds ($2.5 million) saw the largest fall, from 30.6 percent to 24.4 percent. 21% IN THE NEWS Paul Hastings came in at last place on website RollOnFriday’s Best Law Firms to Work At 2024 list, which ranks working cultures at the UK offices of law firms from best to worst. At the top were Burges Salmon and Michelmores. “STAYING SILENT OR DOING NOTHING COULD ACCIDENTALLY GIVE MORE POWER TO THOSE WHO MEAN TO DO HARM.” QUOTE UNQUOTE Hervé Ekué has been elected as managing partner of A&O Shearman, making him the first Black leader of a Magic Circle law firm. Sandie Okoro, general counsel of Standard Chartered, said it was a “big deal for the legal sector, albeit long overdue.” More than 600 Indian lawyers write to DY Chandrachud expressing concern over what they perceive as a threat to the judiciary’s integrity. IN THE NEWS

4 ASIAN LEGAL BUSINESS – APRIL 2024 WWW.LEGALBUSINESSONLINE.COM BRI EFS GORDON OLDHAM, senior partner, Oldham, Li & Nie At the beginning of last year, amidst the rising buzz around ChatGPT, OLN launched a firm-wide survey to hear our staff’s concerns and expectations about AI shaking up the legal industry. We assigned a task force, led by one of our lawyers turned AI guru, to explore the rising technology, with a particular focus on ChatGPT. This task force was responsible for consolidating research, feedback, and suggestions on leveraging how AI could enhance our practice rather than threaten it and bringing to the table some out-of-the-box ideas on working alongside AI. In response to our initial findings and feedback, OLN adopted a cautious approach, informing our staff and clients through newsletters that we were closely monitoring ChatGPT and considered a premature AI integration unwise. This was OLN’s stance last spring. However, I must say the times have since changed. AI is not just knocking; it’s here to stay and become an undeniable part of the future of law. We have since taken significant steps to prepare our team for its integration, including hosting two staff trainings, conducted by a lecturer from HKU and HKUST specialising in AI and Big Data, and a strategic advisor from Google Cloud. These trainings are aimed at equipping our staff with a comprehensive understanding of AI and its practical applications in the legal field. As we inch closer to incorporating AI into our daily operations, our goal is to ensure that our staff is not just well-informed, but also ethically prepared to use these technologies. It’s important to remember that while AI will transform many aspects of legal practice, it cannot replace the “human touch”. Personal interactions, empathy, and soft skills remain at the core of our client relationships. OLN’s vision is to embrace AI as a tool that enhances our legal expertise, allowing us to offer more efficient and innovative solutions to our clients, all the while preserving our unique human touch. AZMUL HAQUE, managing director, Collyer Law At Collyer Law, we acknowledge the transformative impact of generative AI to revolutionise legal practice, and are committed to harness its capabilities to enhance the delivery of exceptional legal services in the digital era. Our approach is one that encompasses three areas: Technology integration, upskilling, and strategic planning. Technology integration: Collyer Law is actively engaging our lawyers in hands-on experimentation with various AI-powered tools tailored for our specific legal workflows. These include platforms for assisting in contract drafting to those that streamline repetitive tasks, enhance accuracy, and boost overall work efficiency. Additionally, efforts are also underway to training an AI chatbot (with a technology partner, exclusively for Collyer Law) on a diet of research materials and proprietary documents, to provide reliable legal responses, ensuring that the chatbot’s outputs are aligned with the firm’s standards and expertise. Upskilling: We recognise the importance of equipping our legal professionals with the knowledge and skills to use AI tools. We organise training sessions for qualified lawyers to become familiar with AI concepts, tools, and best practices. This commitment to continuous learning and innovation fosters a culture where we hope that Generative AI augments our legal expertise, rather than replacing it. FORUM SMALL AND AI-READY Generative AI is ushering in a new era of productivity, and Big Law firms have taken the lead in adopting this groundbreaking technology within the legal industry. However, small and medium-sized law firms are also making efforts to leverage the benefits of Generative AI while closely monitoring potential risks. These firms share with ALB the steps they are taking to efficiently embrace AI and harness its capabilities. WHAT PREPARATIONS ARE YOU CURRENTLY MAKING TO IMPLEMENT GEN AI IN YOUR WORK, INCLUDING THE TRAINING OF LAWYERS? GORDON OLDHAM AZMUL HAQUE VENESSA PHOA

5 ASIAN LEGAL BUSINESS – APRIL 2024 WWW.LEGALBUSINESSONLINE.COM BRI EFS Strategic planning: Effective AI implementation requires a strategic roadmap for its adoption and roll-out, aligned with our business objectives. We’re actively engaging stakeholders to identify pain points, prioritise use cases, and define success metrics. This collaborative approach ensures that AI initiatives are integrated seamlessly into our operations, delivering tangible value to our clients. Through our rapid adoption of AI tools, Collyer Law is poised to enhance efficiency, drive innovation, and deliver exceptional legal services in the digital age. VENESSA PHOA, senior associate, GHOWS We are a small and nimble team of five lawyers and one patent attorney. In terms of background, all of us are quite tech-savvy with good foundational skills to adapt easily to new legal tech. The excellent IT infrastructure of the firm also facilitates easy implementation. The firm is also very supportive of and receptive to trying new tools, including generative AI. We are always on the lookout for ways to improve our practice and service to clients and believe that there is potential in using generative AI to enhance our practice. Our efforts are therefore focused on encouraging and driving curiosity towards generative AI, and education on the responsible use of the same. As to the former, generative AI technology is advancing quickly. We need to be at the forefront of the developments, even for tools not specifically intended for the legal sector. The Technology team and the younger lawyers of the firm take the lead in exploring and introducing new tools to the firm and also in understanding the risks and limitations. This segues to the latter. At its current state, generative AI is a useful tool for augmenting one’s practice, but it does not come without risks. For example, generative AI may sound convincing and eloquent, but it can provide incorrect output or “hallucinate” falsities and case law. We educate and train our colleagues on such risks and the necessary checks which must be made before generative AI output can be used in our work. South Korean law firm DR & AJU Law Group has launched a legal chatbot powered by artificial intelligence, called AI DR & AJU, which it says is the first of its kind in the country. Created through a collaborative effort between the firm and technology companies Nexus AI and Naver Cloud, the chatbot has its own subdomain page open to the public, where any person can input legal queries. AI DR &AJU is only available in Korean. The three companies also signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to ensure long-term collaboration and continuous improvement of the AI DR & AJU service. “Numerous lawyers from DR & AJU participated in training and verifying basic legal consultation sample data by field, and Nexus AI fine-tuned the chatbot based on the sample data and verification data,” said Kyu Chul Lee, DR & AJU’s managing partner, in a statement. “Since users do not need to meet with a lawyer in person, it makes it easier for them to seek advice on issues they might consider trivial or embarrassing. AI DR & AJU provides legal information in all areas of civil, criminal, family, and administrative law,” Lee added. South Korea’s legal tech market has been growing fast in the last couple of years, powered by the coming of generative AI and large-language models like ChatGPT. In May 2023, online legal service platform Law&Good unveiled Law&Bot, a free service that utilises AI to interpret complex legal terms in an easily understandable manner and provide answers to litigation-related questions. Currently, its scope is only limited to divorce lawsuits, with plans to expand to other areas in the future. An AI service for lawyers, tentatively known as Super Lawyer, has been created by Law & Company, which runs an AI-based legal data platform, Bigcase, and local AI startup, Upstage. And this year, the Supreme Prosecutors’ Office is also set to introduce as AI platform for prosecutors and investigators to search databases for cases more easily. The Supreme Court also recently invited tenders for the development of AI that can assist trials, with the aim of preventing delay of trials by easing the burden on judges. SOUTH KOREA’S DR & AJU LAW GROUP LAUNCHES LEGAL AI Q&A CHATBOT Image: GANJIRO KUMA/

6 ASIAN LEGAL BUSINESS – APRIL 2024 WWW.LEGALBUSINESSONLINE.COM BRI EFS Government lawyers and in-house counsel are stereotypically known for having an easier life than private practice lawyers, with greater perks and better work-life balance. But lately, the South Korean legal market has witnessed a rise in “moving private,” a trend that has seen judges, government lawyers and corporate counsel left for private practice. In February, Yoon & Yang landed Jae Woo Jeon as a construction, engineering and public procurement partner from Daewoo Engineering & Construction, and poached Samsung Electronics’ head of legal Sam Park as an employment partner. Around the same time, Shin & Kim has been on a hiring spree from the judiciary, adding former Supreme Court of Korea judges Dong-kyu Kim and Huntae Doh to its partner bench. Earlier, the Korean Big Six firm also hired Jong-In Yoon, the former chairman of Korea’s Personal Information Protection Commission, as a senior advisor to spearhead its AI-related practice group. In markets such as the United States, “moving private” is not something new, as lawyers working in the government often consider leaving for lucrative private-sector opportunities. The litigious culture and strict regulatory oversight of the U.S. also perpetuate Big Law’s appetite for insiders from government agencies to help corporate clients navigate operational and regulatory hurdles in sectors they operate. Now, the same demand for regulatory expertise is being witnessed in South Korea, propelled by an intensified focus on corporate investigations and regulatory oversight from government authorities, according to Hee Woong Yoon, co-managing partner at Yulchon. Yulchon is another one of the Korean law firms that have been hiring aggressively in recent months, raiding big corporations and the judiciary to bolster its partner ranks, especially in disputes. In February, Yulchon tapped Sang Mook Kang, a former senior prosecutor with the Busan District Prosecutor’s Office, as a criminal investigations partner. Kang’s addition followed the arrival of two other former prosecutors, Wook Jin Rah and Woo Young Choe, both of whom left the Seoul Central District Prosecutors’ Office to join Yulchon’s criminal bench in December last year. “The current administration’s focus on increasing regulatory efforts and corporate investigations has led to law firms hiring more individuals capable of handling regulatory, compliance, and risk management matter. Hence, it has led to a rising demand for individuals from the public sectors such as judiciary, prosecution, and police,” Yoon explains. Most recently, Yulchon has responded to the rise in IP disputes by hiring JongCheol Lee, an executive vice president and former chief legal and compliance officer at Samsung Electronics, as a partner. In August last year, the firm also poached Chae Jooyup, general counsel and vice president at biotechnology company SK Biopharmaceuticals, to lead its medtech and bio team in Seoul as a disputes partner. Yoon explains that the hiring of Chae and Lee demonstrated the necessity for law firms to facilitate the development and management of relationships with corporate clients. “It is increasingly recognised that fulfilling client needs requires more than just legal advice; therefore, there is a keen interest in recruiting candidates who can leverage diverse experiences, expertise, and personal networks to serve as true business partners for clients,” says Yoon. As the barriers between private practice, corporate legal departments and the public sector became more porous, Yoon admits that with easier movements come greater competition amongst law firms for seasoned government lawyers and business-savvy in-house counsel. Proficiency in foreign languages, especially English, is also a highly coveted qualification as Korean law firms set their sights on international expansion. “The competition for exceptional resources is intense, particularly highlighted by recent recruitment of Wook Jin Rha, a senior prosecutor with fluent English capability and extensive international experience,” says Yoon, while emphasising Rha’s international exposure from his upbringing in Hong Kong and London. “Recent hires like Jooyup Chae and JongCheol Lee, who came from esteemed Korean corporations namely SK Biopharmaceuticals and Samsung Electronics respectively, possess the requisite skills to adeptly navigate international matters, thereby enhancing our firm’s global capabilities,” Yoon adds. He says that last year, Yulchon outstripped all the other Big Six firms in growth rate and achieved the secondhighest revenue per partner. And the Seoul-headquartered firm has showed no sign of stopping in its expansionary track. “We aim to further enhance our ability to deliver excellence and support our clients both domestically and internationally,” says Yoon. REGULATORY HURDLES DRIVE KOREAN FIRMS TO HIRE MORE JUDGES, IN-HOUSE LAWYERS Image: wichayada suwanachun/

7 ASIAN LEGAL BUSINESS – APRIL 2024 WWW.LEGALBUSINESSONLINE.COM BRI EFS Q&A ‘WE HAVE LONG SEEN THE IMPORTANCE OF HAVING ON-THE-GROUND LEGAL EXPERTS’ Over the past few months, Singapore’s Allen & Gledhill has declared its intention to keep expanding regionally through the opening of a rep office in Shanghai and the launch of a new alliance in Indonesia. Managing Partner Jerry Koh talks about what is driving the firm’s Asia strategy, and how it maintains the same standards across various markets. ALB: Tell us more about what drove the opening of the Shanghai office, and the role it will play in A&G’s growth plans? JERRY KOH: Our firm is always looking for ways to provide greater value to our clients, and we constantly engage them to better understand their needs in Singapore, and the region. In addition, we proactively monitor the economy to determine growing markets and potential opportunities for our clients. As the largest trading partner of ASEAN ($1.2 trillion in 2022) and one of the largest foreign investors in the region as well as Singapore (about $8 billion in 2022), China is undoubtedly a key market for our clients. In turn, ASEAN countries are also investing heavily in China, with Singapore being the largest foreign investor in China since 2013. This mutually beneficial relationship is something we have identified as an opportunity since 2018, when the governments of both countries named legal and judicial cooperation as an area of collaboration between the two countries. As one of the largest law firms in Southeast Asia, many of our clients already have a presence in China or are looking to establish one there. We also have existing relationships with Chinese enterprises who are constantly looking to diversify their investments into ASEAN. As such, we see our representative offfice in Shanghai as a gateway to expansion, for our clients in China as well as in the region. Our team comprises of qualified, experienced, and bilingual local and international lawyers with long and extensive experience in China. With our international expertise and qualifications, local expertise and experience, familiarity with Chinese and international markets and business culture, and fluent bilingual proficiencies, we bridge the gap between Chinese and foreign parties and bring a unique, significant, and value-added set of skills to our crossborder matters. ALB: A&G’s expansion comes at a time when Singapore law firms of different sizes have been endeavouring to become increasingly regional. What unique attributes will set the firm apart in the face of this competition? KOH: Our motivation to expand our regional presence has always been to better serve the needs of our clients. Our firm regularly works on many significant cross-border matters that span multiple jurisdictions in ASEAN. We have long seen the importance of having on-the-ground legal experts across the region, to ensure that our clients can receive legal advice tailored to their needs. This is why we first expanded our regional capabilities 14 years ago through our associate firm in Malaysia, Rahmat Lim & Partners. Since then, we have continued to set up more offices throughout the region, including Myanmar, Vietnam and now China, as well as working in association with AGI Legal in Indonesia. This allows for us to have local knowledge and connections, while providing clients with seamless end-to-end service across jurisdictional borders that is tailored to their needs. With offices in Singapore, Myanmar, Vietnam and China, as well as associate firms in Malaysia (Rahmat Lim & Partners) and Indonesia (AGI Legal), the Allen & Gledhill network, collectively known as A&G Asia, now has over 600 lawyers, making it one of the largest law firms in the region. ALB: With offices now spanning across multiple Asian jurisdictions, including alliances and partnerships, how does Allen & Gledhill ensure cohesive collaboration and consistent service quality across its regional network? KOH: Our lawyers across A&G Asia often work closely with one another across different practice groups, as well as across jurisdictions, to deliver tailored advice that is suited to the specific needs of the matter. All our offices have the full support of our extensive network across the major economies of ASEAN, which allow us to provide a comprehensive suite of legal services delivered by locally qualified lawyers who have deep experience working on multi-jurisdictional matters that cuts across various practice areas. Our firm also holds firmwide events (such as our partners’ retreat and firm trip), where lawyers and staff across our regional network have the opportunity to come together for cohesion and collaboration. This ensures that we have constant engagement and communication across the network, so that we can provide seamless end-to-end services to our clients in Singapore, Asia, and the world. JERRY KOH

8 ASIAN LEGAL BUSINESS – APRIL 2024 WWW.LEGALBUSINESSONLINE.COM BRI EFS TIKTOK SET TO RESTART E-COMMERCE IN INDONESIA, BUT DOUBTS PERSIST TikTok has been engulfed in regulatory whirlwinds across the world, which have put a dent in its global ambitions. In the United States, the popular social media app owned by ByteDance faces a ban in the United States unless its Beijing-based parent company divests its U.S. operations, and in Indonesia, TikTok had to temporarily quit its e-commerce business as its shopping arm ran into a slew of obstacles. In September last year, Indonesia announced it would ban direct commercial transactions on all social media platforms in a bid to ensure “fair and just” competition, protect user data, and ensure the survivals of small and medium-sized mortar-and-brick vendors and traditional wholesale markets in ASEAN’s largest economy. Following that, TikTok Shop has to shut down last October. However, following a $1.5 billion investment into GoTo’s e-commerce unit, Tokopedia, the social media platform looks set to restart its online shopping business in Southeast Asia’s largest economy. WHAT DID THE NEW RULES MEAN FOR TIKTOK SHOP? The September order came as part of the Ministry of Trade Regulation No. 31 of 2023 on the Business Licensing, Advertising, Development, and Supervision of Business Actors in Trade through Electronic Systems (MOT Reg 31/2023). It forced TikTok Shop, the e-commerce arm of the Chinese-owned videosharing app, to shut down temporarily in October. Naufal Fileindi, a data protection and TMT partner at Indonesian firm GHP, believes that the government views these commercial transactions on social media platforms as being “too disruptive” towards micro, small and medium enterprises. He further clarifies that while there were no clear prohibitions for TikTok Shop to conduct e-commerce activities directly within its platform, the shopping arm fell under the newly introduced category of “Social-Commerce” platforms. These platforms include social media organizers that provide features, menus, and/or facilities enabling merchants to offer goods and services.” According to the regulations, Social-Commerce platforms are regulated as a form of business model for an Organizer of Trade Through Electronic Systems (PPMSE). PPMSEs are business actors that provide electronic communication facilities used for trading transactions. However, this type of business actor is prohibited from facilitating payment transactions on their electronic systems. “TikTok Shop’s Social-Commerce feature encompasses not only the offering of goods and/or services, but also encompasses the transactional aspects which include the (i) purchase of said goods and/or services, (ii) facilitation of payment, and (iii) delivery of purchased goods and/or services,” explains Fileindi. “Social-Commerce PPMSEs may only display an offer of goods and/ or services, but the transaction must be conducted in a separate platform (i.e. redirected to an e-commerce platform, or a merchant’s landing page),” he adds. IS THE TIKTOK-TOKOPEDIA MERGER THE SOLUTION? In order to stay compliant with the trade regulations, TikTok would need to establish a new entity, obtain an e-commerce license from the Ministry of Trade, and create a standalone TikTok Shop app independent from the social media platform. To hold onto the lucrative Indonesian e-commerce market, TikTok opted to take a controlling 75 per cent stake in Tokopedia, an e-commerce unit of Jakarta-based technology group GoTo. As part of the transaction, Tokopedia will acquire TikTok Shop’s Indonesia business for $340 million, enlarging its e-commerce platform. “TikTok’s acquisition of Tokopedia was, from the naked eye, conducted mainly to address the concern involving MOT Reg 31/2023, by facilitating transactions through Tokopedia,” says Fileindi. But he doesn’t see the acquisition of Tokopedia by TikTok as an attempt to circumvent regulations in Indonesia. Instead, it should be seen as efforts to exercise compliance with the relevant regulations to continue its business operations in the country, he says. In December last year, transactions through TikTok Shop resumed after its acquisition of Tokopedia. But, the merger appeared to have failed to shield TikTok from ministerial scrutiny. In February, Indonesia’s minister of cooperatives and SMEs Teten Masduki alleged that TikTok Shop continues to violate local regulations because the platform still allows direct transactions on social media. And Trade Image: XanderSt/ EXPLAINER

9 ASIAN LEGAL BUSINESS – APRIL 2024 WWW.LEGALBUSINESSONLINE.COM BRI EFS Minister Zulkifli Hasan has said he would monitor the partnership between TikTok Shop and Tokopedia to see if any violations still occur. “The MOT is still of the view that this workaround remains non-compliant towards MOT Reg 31/2023, as the transaction is not redirected to Tokopedia and is still conducted through TikTok Shop. MOT’s insistence on noncompliance arising out of TikTok Shop still facilitating the transactions may be due to the facilitation of the transactions in the app from a front-end perspective, regardless of the statement that transactions are managed by PT Tokopedia in the back end,” Fileindi says. HOW CAN THE GOVERNMENT FINETUNE ITS REGULATORY APPROACH? Lawyers believe the case has demonstrated the necessity for the Indonesian government to establish and implement provisions that clearly define what may or may not be done by business actors, as the new provisions does not provide clear definitions on what “facilitating payment transactions.” “Without the implementation of clearly defined restrictions DEALS $3.3 BLN Formation of Stonepeak Asia Infrastructure Fund Deal Type: Funds Firms: Simpson Thacher & Bartlett Jurisdictions: Singapore, U.S. $2.1 BLN Sale of BAT stake in ITC Deal Type: M&A Firms: Herbert Smith Freehills; Shardul Amarchand Mangaldas & Co Jurisdictions: India, UK $1.03 BLN TDCX’s take-private Deal Type: M&A Firms: Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom Jurisdiction: Singapore $1 BLN Belle Fashion Group’s planned IPO Deal Type: IPO Firms: Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton; Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer; Haiwen & Partners; JunHe Jurisdictions: China, Hong Kong $1 BLN Sterlite Power-GIC India power transmission JV Deal Type: Projects Firms: AZB & Partners; Khaitan & Co; Shardul Amarchand Mangaldas & Co Jurisdictions: India, Singapore $870 MLN Sale of Home Credit Group’s Vietnam business to Siam Commercial Bank Deal Type: M&A Firms: Allens; Clifford Chance; Linklaters; Vilaf Jurisdictions: Netherlands, , Thailand $360 MLN Mitsui’s invests in Industrial Pesquera Santa Priscila Deal Type: M&A Firms: Allen & Gledhill; Apolo Abogados; Bustamante Fabara; Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton Jurisdictions: Ecuador, Japan, Singapore $258 MLN Trial Holdings’ Tokyo IPO Deal Type: IPO Firms: Anderson Mori & Tomotsune; Davis Polk & Wardwell; Mori Hamada & Matsumoto; Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom Jurisdiction: Japan and limitations, other companies may see this as an opportunity to explore plausible workarounds and establish new business activities, which may ultimately lead to a one-stop all-in-one application that is somewhat compliant with the established regulations,” says Fileindi. “The government’s commitment in upholding and enforcing the regulation will need to be scrutinized by relevant parties, especially business players, to ensure that the enactment of MOT Reg 31/2023 is not some sort of knee-jerk reaction to other agendas,” he adds.

10 ASIAN LEGAL BUSINESS – APRIL 2024 WWW.LEGALBUSINESSONLINE.COM BRI EFS APPOINTMENTS ABHINAV BHUSHAN LEAVING 39 Essex Chambers JOINING Drew & Napier PRACTICE Disputes LOCATION Singapore PETER BRABANT LEAVING King & Spalding JOINING Charles Russell Speechlys PRACTICE Disputes LOCATION Singapore DAVID MACARTHUR LEAVING Anderson Mori & Tomotsune JOINING Yulchon PRACTICE Disputes LOCATION Seoul MEILISA HUSEIN LEAVING Meilisa Husein & Partners JOINING FKNK Law Firm PRACTICE M&A LOCATION Jakarta JONGCHEOL LEE LEAVING Samsung Electronics JOINING Yulchon PRACTICE Intellectual Property LOCATION Seoul JAKE ROBSON LEAVING King & Wood Mallesons JOINING Greenberg Traurig PRACTICE M&A LOCATION Singapore KHELVIN XU LEAVING Rajah & Tann JOINING Covenant Chambers PRACTICE Disputes LOCATION Singapore Philip Georgiou, an international arbitration and litigation expert who co-founded Hong Kong law firm Georgiou Payne Stewien (GPS Legal), has left to launch his own firm, Georgiou Partnership. Joining Georgiou in the move are GPS partners Kareena Teh and Randall Arthur. Insolvency disputes expert Arthur will be a partner at the new firm, while Teh, who joined GPS from now-defunct EY member firm LC Lawyers last year, will be a special counsel. “We have been hard at work to realise the dream of starting a law firm fully dedicated to the core practices of dispute resolution, compliance and investigations, and the specialist practices of construction, insolvency, and asset recovery,” said Georgiou in a LinkedIn post. Georgiou, a former disputes partner at Baker Botts and Jones Day, cofounded GPS in 2017 along with Sonny Payne and Brett Stewien. The firm was known as GPS McQuhae for a while, but reverted to GPS after partner Ben McQuhae, also formerly of Jones Day, left to set up his own firm. The exits leave GPS with three partners: Payne, Stewien, and John Koh, who joined last year from FitzGerald Lawyers. It is understood that GPS Legal will be renamed soon. PARIKHIT SARMA LEAVING Virtus Law JOINING RHTLaw Asia PRACTICE Capital Markets LOCATION Singapore NUR SYAFINAZ VANI LEAVING Rosli Dahlan Saravana Partnership JOINING Zul Rafique & Partners PRACTICE Disputes LOCATION Kuala Lumpur HK: GPS CO-FOUNDED EXITS TO LAUNCH NEW DISPUTES-FOCUSED FIRM Image: MAKSIM ANKUDA/

11 ASIAN LEGAL BUSINESS – APRIL 2024 WWW.LEGALBUSINESSONLINE.COM BRI EFS Image: Wirestock Creators/ China is grappling with an escalating demographic crisis. In 2023, the senior population has ballooned by 30 million in the world’s second-largest economy, taking the total size of the elderly class to 300 million – almost a fifth of the country’s population. In the meantime, the number of newborns has plummeted to an all-time low of nine million last year as economic challenges, soaring childcare costs and cultural shifts deterred couples from having babies. Deaths, on the other hand, have risen to 11 million - the highest since 1974. The fatal combination has led to a population decline in a country in desperate need of a robust labour force to shore up its sputtering economy. But on the other side of the coin, some sectors are poised to see growing commercial opportunities in the wake of the demographic shifts. In January, Beijing has released official guidelines to strengthen the so-called “silver economy” as part of the concerted efforts to tackle the challenges of an ageing population. The “silver economy” refers to a collection of economic activities that offer products and services tailored to the needs of the elderly population and aim to support them during the ageing process. Spearheaded by the State Council, the guidelines detailed measures, including establishing ten industrial parks to facilitate sectors catering for elderly citizens, improving food and healthcare services, expediting the development of elderly care institutions, and stimulating consumption by senior citizens. Indeed, health-related consumption, ranging from medical devices to pharmaceuticals, is estimated to account for the biggest share of spending among the older age group. Lawyers monitoring this development closely believe demand for legal services is set to rise in sectors propelled by the “silver economy” directives. “Notably, sectors like tourism, sports and recreation, elderly consumption, healthcare, financial services, and infrastructure development for the elderly are expected to unveil significant opportunities,” explains Charles Wu, a senior partner at Dacheng Law Offices in Shanghai. Proactive policymaking might have injected strong momentum into these growth sectors, but admittedly China’s “silver economy” is still in its embryonic stage of development, which calls for a thorough understanding of the specific industry dynamics and financial intricacies to deliver tailored and effective legal advice. Lawyers believe that is one of the reasons legal services in this area will be in great demand. One of those industries is the real estate sector. Wu, who also sits on Dacheng’s China Region Board, tells ALB that he has been entrusted by a few insurance companies to acquire a stock of hotels, flats, and other properties and convert them into high-end nursing homes after age-appropriate renovation. Per the instructions from the government and state-owned enterprises, Dacheng has also been undertaking urban renewal projects in dilapidated communities in Shanghai. These communities usually accommodate a large population of elderly individuals, yet the deteriorating quality of buildings and housing conditions have rendered them unsuitable for habitation, according to Wu. “When dealing with infrastructure construction, urban renewal, and other projects initiated by government or stateowned entities, it is crucial to thoroughly consider the financial balance and expected returns. Consequently, legal services should be provided with a focus on these fundamental factors,” says Wu. In a clear sign of commitment to developing the silver economy as a viable growth engine, Beijing has also allocated sufficient financial resources to support projects at the local level. For example, Wu has recently been commissioned by a local government to advise on the design, implementation, and investment management of a government-led urban renewal fund. “With the silver economy being a prominent policy focus, it is foreseeable that the urban renewal fund will allocate a greater portion of its resources to ‘elderly +’ projects. These projects will foster the development of age-friendly infrastructure and services, catering to the specific needs of the ageing population and promoting their well-being within urban environments,” says Wu. As the silver economy continues to mature, it will also create increasing demand for the integration of legal services, such as “insurance plus real estate,” “intelligence plus real estate,” “healthcare plus new retail” and so on, notes Wu. These novel demands could put law firms’ capability in cross-practice offerings to test. However, it’s a less bullish picture for the private sector without the backing of policy support in terms of sustainable legal demand and long-term commercial viability. Wang Jianwen, a partner at Beijingbased DeHeng Law Offices, says currently the size of private business actors remains relatively small. As such, not many of these private companies have the capacity to afford premium legal services as of yet, says Wang. “In recent years, many law firms in China have dipped their toes in industries related to elderly care. But the overall size of that market remains slim, limiting firms’ ability to scale,” adds Wang. CHINA’S AGEING POPULATION SET TO INCREASE OPPORTUNITIES FOR LEGAL WORK

12 ASIAN LEGAL BUSINESS – APRIL 2024 WWW.LEGALBUSINESSONLINE.COM BRI EFS Weil, Gotshal & Manges has become the latest U.S. law firm to retreat from the Chinese market, saying it is moving towards ending its presence on the mainland. The law firm confirmed to Reuters that it closed its Beijing office on Dec. 31 and is “engaged in discussions on the office in Shanghai with a view to consolidating its Asia operations” in Hong Kong. “We will be working out the details in the coming months, but we remain dedicated to our award-winning Asia practice and to providing top service to our clients in the region,” a Weil spokesperson said in a statement. The spokesperson did not say whether Weil laid off its Beijing staff or how many employees it had there. The firm’s website now lists six employees, including one partner, in Shanghai, although two of them are also members of Weil’s Hong Kong office. Weil has more than 20 lawyers and other employees in Hong Kong, according to its website. U.S. and international law firms have pulled back from the Chinese market amid growing pressures on foreign businesses there and converging economic and geopolitical challenges. New Chinese government rules on data privacy and cybersecurity were among the reasons cited by global law firm Dentons last year as it ended its combination with Chinese law firm Dacheng, an 8,000-lawyer firm that accounted for its entire presence in mainland China. Other firms have cited market conditions in announcing cuts or office closures in the country. UK-founded Linklaters in September said it was laying off 30 China-based lawyers due to the country’s “prolonged” economic downturn, which has brought a drop-off in transactions and deal activity requiring legal advice. U.S.-founded law firms Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld, Latham & Watkins, Perkins Coie and Proskauer Rose have also closed at least one of their China offices since June, according to media reports. U.S. LAW FIRM WEIL EXITS BEIJING, ‘IN DISCUSSIONS’ FOR SHANGHAI CLOSURE U.S. law firm Orrick Herrington & Sutcliffe will consolidate its China offering into its Beijing office after deciding not to renew its lease in Shanghai, a spokesperson has confirmed. It has also terminated its lease and operations in Taipei. Two partners from the Shanghai office, Ethan Ma and Jeffrey Sun, along with two associates and one other staff member, will be affiliated with the Beijing office. Eight other employees (including one associate and one consultant) will be offered market severance. Orrick currently has no resident lawyers in Taipei. With these closures, Orrick becomes one of three U.S. law firms in the span of a month. Another recent announcement came from Weil (see accompanying story), while Perkins Coie has said it will shutter its Shanghai office while retaining its Beijing office and IP agency business. In August 2020, Orrick closed its Hong Kong office. The firm currently has offices in Beijing, Singapore, and Tokyo within the Asia-Pacific region. The Beijing office will continue to provide litigation and IP services, including both U.S. federal court and ITC litigation for Chinese companies, and support with cross-border corporate transactions, the spokesperson noted. With the relocation of the partners from Shanghai, Orrick’s Beijing office will have five partners. “We have recruited two top IP litigators this year who focus on Section 337 matters before the U.S. International Trade Commission as well as federal and state court representation: Josh Pond and Tim Carroll. They will work closely with Xiang Wang, who heads our China IP practice, and Ethan Ma, to serve our Greater China clients. We will also continue our cross-border M&A and venture capital work for Greater China clients,” they added. “These moves reflect a rebalancing of our Asia Pacific platform, including the launch of our Singapore office in 2021, to align with client demand,” the spokesperson said. “Going forward, we will continue to support our APAC tech and energy sector clients as they innovate regionally and globally, from our offices in Beijing, Singapore and Tokyo. This approach will enable us to shift greater investment to Singapore and other markets.” They added that while the Beijing office will primarily focus on the tech sector, the Singapore team “is focused on serving the fast-evolving energy transition market throughout South and Southeast Asia, including in collaboration with our Tokyo energy team.” ORRICK CLOSES IN SHANGHAI, TAIPEI AS GREATER CHINA RETREAT CONTINUES Image: KenoKickit/

OVERVIEW Regulatory activity in various jurisdictions is hotting up as geopolitical turmoil shows no sign of abating, coupled with economic instability, which presents serious challenges for financial institutions. Businesses anticipate an increase in financial crime risks in the current environment. It’s an intricate mosaic of challenges where the forces of money laundering, corruption, fraud, and financial crime pose formidable threats and require compliance vigilance. The billion-dollar money laundering case in Singapore raises questions about how illicit activity could have slipped under radar but also underscores the critical importance of robust frameworks and continuous refinement of regulations to meet compliance challenges. AI offers exciting promises in this realm but has introduced novel forms of cyber threats, data privacy, financial fraud, and other regulatory challenges at a faster pace than ever before. Making a RegTech switch is always a challenge with legacy systems, data silos, and internal collaboration roadblocks that inflate compliance tasks and costs. Join us as we dissect the latest developments and equip you with the tools to thrive amidst uncertainty. The ALB Pan Asian Regulatory and Anti-Corruption Compliance Summit 2024 returns, bringing together distinguished anti-money laundering experts, chief compliance officers, regulators, and thought leaders for a day of profound discourse and networking in Singapore while navigating these challenges collectively. From exploring the interplay between automation and fraud to delving into the intricacies of sanctions compliance, the agenda encompasses a diverse array of topics designed to empower attendees on risk management, emerging trends, and real-world compliance issues, as striking the right balance between fostering innovation and safeguarding stability remains a conundrum. 26 – 27 SEPTEMBER 2024, GRAND COPTHORNE WATERFRONT HOTEL, SINGAPORE ALB Pan Asian Regulatory and Anti-Corruption Compliance Summit 2024 Photos from the live event that took place at the Pan-Asian Regulatory Summit on September 20, 2023, at the Grand Copthorne Waterfront Hotel, Singapore, and on March 19, 2024, at Kowloon Shangri-La, Hong Kong. FOR SPONSORSHIP OPPORTUNITIES, PLEASE CONTACT: Ben Ong Sponsorship Manager / +65 9766 5883 FOR MORE INFORMATION, KINDLY VISIT FOR SPEAKING OPPORTUNITIES,PLEASE CONTACT: Mohd Fazlan Conference Producer, Asia & Emerging Markets - Legal / +65 9381 8370 PROUDLY PRESENTED BY SILVER SPONSOR BOOTH SPONSOR SESSION SPONSORS