China passes controversial cyber law
The Chinese government has passed its new cyber security law despite opposition from international businesses and human rights advocates.
The law, passed on Monday, contains several controversial elements which critics say will restrict foreign firms and shut off even more of the internet to Chinese citizens.
These include requiring data collected by “critical information infrastructure operators” to be stored within China’s borders. However, is does not clearly define which businesses fall into the category, which could be problematic for companies.
Human Rights Watch says that any cyber laws should protect freedom of expression and human rights while making internet networks more secure. It says that China’s law, which comes into effect in June 2017, is about surveillance, censorship and other controls.
“If online speech and privacy are a bellwether of Beijing’s attitude toward peaceful criticism, everyone – including netizens in China and major international corporations – is now at risk,” said HRW’s China Director Sophie Richardson. “This law’s passage means there are no protections for users against serious charges.”
HSF joins UN sustainability initiative
Herbert Smith Freehills has signed to the United Nations Global Compact, the world’s largest global corporate sustainability initiative.
In doing so, the law firm agrees to support and implement ten principles including encouraging clients and others it works with to adopt similar standards; and continuing to work with NGOs, charities and governments of developing countries through its pro bono programme.
Heavyweight hire for RPC
International law firm RPC has hired M&A and private equity specialist Jeremy Cunningham after 5 years at Mayer Brown in Hong Kong.
Cunningham’s initial focus will be strengthening the firm’s corporate practice and building stronger ties with the non-contentious teams in Singapore. He will also develop a closer relationship with RPC’s Asian and UK teams over the longer term.
Clifford Chance announces new corporate practice hire
Frank Yuen is joining Clifford Chance in Hong Kong, taking its corporate practice partner headcount in Asia Pacific to 34. Yuen has more than 20 years’ experience in M&A and equity capital markets and will join Clifford Chance in early 2017 from Woo Kwan Lee & Lo.