International companies remain cautious about entering
China, in spite of newly-announced regulations to open up the
Foreign Investment Law of the People's Republic of China
(FIL) hopes to encourage western companies to engage with
the state. Among various other initiatives, it aims to instil a
level playing field between domestic firms, state-owned
enterprises, and foreign businesses.
"Few clients have been moving into mainland China, due in
part to the local authorities taking up considerable management
time and costs," said UK-based Akin Gump M&A and antitrust
partner Davina Garrod.
In-house lawyers agree. "Chinese M&A is down by all
metrics, for a couple of reasons," said an M&A lawyer at a
UK bank. "More recently, the coronavirus is absolutely going to
have an effect on doing business in China. M&A is
impossible if you can’t actually go to the