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In this annual webinar series, we are putting a spotlight on warehousing arrangements. Our speakers will update you on legislative and customs developments, share insights into the current practices of authorities, and provide practical tips on how you can identify opportunities, maximize benefits and mitigate risks when utilizing these warehouses as part of your supply chain solutions.

Our Banking & Finance, Competition & Antitrust, Mergers & Acquisitions and Trade partners in Johannesburg outline ten reasons to turn your attention to African trade and investment opportunities in the coming year. Some of these reasons include the rise in commodity prices, shifting patterns and alternative financing, digitization and competition law and enforcement.

On 2 November 2021, the Ministry of Commerce of China officially released the revised Catalogue of Technologies Subject to Import Prohibition and Restriction, effective immediately, which identifies, among others, foreign “data encryption technology employing a key length greater than 256 bits” as a technology that requires import permit when transferred to a Chinese party.

China has strengthened its commitment to protect personal information by adopting the new Personal Information Protection Law (PIPL 《中华人民共和国个人信息保护法》) which gives data subjects the power to control and determine how, with whom and for what purposes their personal information can be shared, analyzed or handled. Our Firm has previously released a more detailed discussion on the PIPL, which took effect on 1 November 2021.

The wide-ranging proposed amendments to China’s Antimonopoly Law (AML) (“Proposed Amendments”) were published for public comments immediately after being presented to China’s top legislature for the first reading. It is clear from the Proposed Amendments that China intends to continue to strengthen antitrust enforcement.

The local antitrust regulator’s recent fine of USD 45.62 million on an electrical product manufacturer follows SAMR’s record USD 117 million fine for RPM earlier this year. SAMR also continues to actively enforce failure-to-notify/gun-jumping violations, imposing 24 penalty decisions over Q3 of 2021. The authority may be contemplating addressing illegal price-related behaviours under the Pricing Law, in addition to the Anti-monopoly Law.

China has strengthened its commitment to investigate commercial bribery offenses, as indicated by two recent legislative developments — Guiding Opinions on Establishing a Mechanism for Third-party Supervision and Evaluation of the Compliance of Enterprises Involved in Cases (for Trial Implementation) (“Third-Party Mechanism Guiding Opinions,” 《关于建立涉案企业合规第三方监督评估机制的指导意见(试行)》, issued in June 2021) and Opinions on Further Promoting the Investigation of Bribery and Acceptance of Bribes (“Opinions on Dual Investigations,” 《关于进一步推进受贿行贿一起查的意见》, issued in September 2021). These significant developments indicate China’s latest enforcement trends with a renewed focus on bribe givers and commercial bribery, while balancing the need to protect legitimate business interests.

The latest issue of the China employment law series looks at: what employers need to consider under the New Personal Information Protection Law, new measures to protect gig worker labor security rights and interests, the illegality of the ‘996’ work system, flexible employment measures for the Free Trade Zone enterprises, Shanghai court rulings on office phone conversations being used as evidence, Beijing court rulings on lawful dismissal, Shenzhen court rulings on dismissal, and new protection for delivery workers.