On 26 January 2024, China issued significantly higher merger filing turnover-based thresholds, with immediate effect. Notably, China has removed a hybrid threshold proposed in the June 2022 draft, which was based on both revenue and market value of target companies and purported to target high-value “killer” acquisitions.
On 29 December 2023, the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress of the People’s Republic of China promulgated the amended Company Law of the People’s Republic of China (“2023 Company Law”), after its deliberation of four versions of draft amendments in the past three years. The 2023 Company Law will come into force on 1 July 2024.
The amendments cover a wide range of topics, including capital contribution and reduction, equity/share transfer and repurchase, corporate governance matters (such as organizational structure and responsibilities and duties of controlling shareholders, actual controllers, directors, supervisors and senior management, etc.), shareholder rights protection, company establishment and dissolution/liquidation, etc.
South Africa’s trade relationship with China is growing, resulting in several announcements regarding trade at the BRICS Summit in August 2023. Among the announcements was the news that Chinese companies had signed deals to buy South African products worth around USD 2.2 billion. Also announced were plans for China to import more South African beef and other South African agricultural products, as well as the donation of Chinese energy equipment worth USD 8.9 million to South Africa, in addition to a grant valued at USD 26.9 million to assist the country with its energy crisis.
In recent months, generative artificial intelligence has taken the world by storm. Following plans to offer generative AI products announced by Chinese companies, the Cyberspace Administration of China released on 11 April 2023 the Measures for the Management of Generative Artificial Intelligence Services for public consultation. Following the consultation period, the interim measures were published on 13 July and take effect on 15 August.
The Brazilian Secretariat of Foreign Trade opened, on 22 June 2023, a new investigation to assess whether the Chinese government granted actionable subsidies to its national producers who exported fiber-optic cables to Brazil. The investigation may result in the imposition of countervailing measures and the consequent increase in the cost of Brazilian imports of fiber-optic cables for a period of five years. In parallel, there is another ongoing investigation into the alleged practice of dumping by Chinese manufacturers/exporters of the same product, which may result in the imposition of antidumping duties, further raising the cost of Brazilian importers.
On 16 May 2023, the China Securities Regulatory Commission (CSRC) published Guideline No. 6 on the Application of Regulatory Rules on Overseas Securities Offerings and Listings: Guidelines for Overseas Offering of Global Depositary Receipts (GDR) by Domestic Listed Companies. It provides detailed guidance from the CSRC on the registration, filing, use of proceeds and other requirements on overseas offerings of GDRs by Chinese listed companies.
Our Asia Pacific Employment & Compensation team is pleased to share our quarterly update, which highlights key employment law changes across the Asia Pacific region in the first quarter of 2023.
On 12 April 2023, China’s regulators on cybersecurity and product standardization, including the Cyberspace Administration of China, Ministry of Industry and Information Technology, Ministry of Public Security, Ministry of Finance and the China National Certification and Accreditation Administration, jointly published a Circular to announce changes to the licensing regimes for network products distributed in the Chinese market.
Baker McKenzie’s Asia Pacific Employers’ Forum took place in Singapore on Thursday, 27 April 2023. You can access a number of related resources relating to employment issues and trends.
The Ministry of Commerce of China initiated an antidumping and countervailing duty administrative review of barley from Australia, effective from 14 April 2023. For all Australian barley exporters, this is an opportunity to revoke the existing antidumping and countervailing duties and resume exportation to China.