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Michael Foundethakis

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Michael Foundethakis is the global chair of Baker McKenzie’s Banking & Finance Practice Group. In addition, he heads Banking & Finance in Paris and acts as global head of Trade & Export Finance. Mr. Foundethakis is highly recommended as a leading banking and finance lawyer by Chambers Global, Legal 500, JUVE and IFLR. Additionally, he was the exclusive winner of the ILO Client Choice Award2011 in Banking for Germany. A team led by Michael Foundethakis was awarded Banking, Finance & Restructuring Team of the Year at The African Legal Awards 2015.

Welcome to the March edition of this quarterly publication that includes a variety of legal and market focused articles on current topics of interest in the world of trade finance.

As always we hope that you enjoy this edition of Baker McKenzie’s Trade Finance Quarterly Insight and invite you to reach out to any of the contributors or indeed anyone else in the team should you wish to discuss any of the issues covered in this edition or have any other trade finance related queries.

The COVID-19 crisis has brought into focus the obligations of service providers towards customers with disabilities. In particular, there were reports of some retailers failing to recognise legitimate exceptions to rules regarding wearing face coverings and/or handling enquiries about exemptions with a lack of sensitivity. The issue of “hidden disabilities” became particularly significant in that context. Heavy reliance on online service channels highlighted the importance of ensuring that those services were fully accessible to customers with a range of disabilities, particularly as those channels were tested by a sudden uptick in demand. Older customers and customers with disabilities who relied on online shopping and in-store assistance found that they could not access the same level of support. Reconfiguration of store access to facilitate social distancing required retailers to re-assess whether those arrangements created difficulties for those with mobility and other impairments. The Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) issued some helpful guidance to retailers in response to some of the issues that had arisen.

In July of 2017, Andrew Bailey, the chief executive of the UK Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), announced in a speech that after 2021 the FCA would no longer use its power to compel panel banks to submit rate information used to determine the London Interbank Offered Rate (LIBOR). Mr. Bailey encouraged the market to develop robust alternative reference rates to replace LIBOR.

LIBOR has long been the dominant rate for determining interest payments on adjustable-rate financial products and, although progress is being made, LIBOR transition remains a fundamental issue confronting financial markets. Understanding and planning for the impact on your business is key to a smooth transition. Baker McKenzie is pleased to provide expert guidance on this issue below. Please do get in touch if you’d like to learn more.

Countries around the globe are facing unprecedented and rapid change due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The Government Intervention Schemes Guide provides a summary of key government intervention measures across jurisdictions around the globe in relation to: Foreign Investment Restrictions Debt Equity Taxation EU State Aid Approvals (where relevant) READ REPORT We will…

Countries around the globe are facing unprecedented and rapid change due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The Government Intervention Schemes Guide provides a summary of key government intervention measures across jurisdictions around the globe in relation to: Foreign Investment Restrictions Debt Equity Taxation EU State Aid Approvals (where relevant) READ REPORT We will…

Countries around the globe are facing unprecedented and rapid change due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The Government Intervention Schemes Guide provides a summary of key government intervention measures across jurisdictions around the globe in relation to: Foreign Investment Restrictions Debt Equity Taxation EU State Aid Approvals (where relevant) READ REPORT We will…

Countries around the globe are facing unprecedented and rapid change due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The Government Intervention Schemes Guide provides a summary of key government intervention measures across jurisdictions around the globe in relation to: Foreign Investment Restrictions Debt Equity Taxation EU State Aid Approvals (where relevant) READ REPORT We will…

Countries around the globe are facing unprecedented and rapid change due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The Government Intervention Schemes Guide provides a summary of key government intervention measures across jurisdictions around the globe in relation to: Foreign Investment Restrictions Debt Equity Taxation EU State Aid Approvals (where relevant) READ REPORT…

Welcome to the December edition of this quarterly publication that includes a variety of legal and market focused articles on current topics of interest in the world of trade finance. 

In our last edition, COVID-19 was the inevitable link between the articles we featured. In this edition, we bring into focus three major topics that are set to play their part in the global economic recovery process – technology, the transition to risk free rates and the role of environmental, social and governance (ESG) criteria in the financial markets. 

We have a proven track record of advising on export credit agency export financings, regularly advising financial institutions, export credit agencies, exporters, producers and corporate borrowers on financing solutions. Please click on the link below to find out more about our ECA Export Finance capabilities. DOWNLOAD