Cheng Jun, Zhonglun, Beijing
5 February 2013 | By Yun Kriegler
Name: Cheng Jun
Position: Partner of Zhonglun Law Firm
What was your first-ever job?
I spent two years in International Human Rights Foundation as a coordinator.
Where did you study?
Doctor of Law in Business Law, University of Paris (2003), with doctoral dissertation receiving the highest comments, passed French Bar in 2003; Master of Law in Business and Economical Laws, University of Paris (1999); Master of Law, Renmin University of China (1997), passed Chinese Bar in 1995;
Where did you train?
I spent a few years studying and working in France. Besides this, I trained in Beijing Huanzhong & Partners and Kunlun Law Firm before I joined Zhonglun Law Firm. The years of practice in these law firms afford me considerable legal experience in solving various kinds of issues that our clients may encounter.
Have you lived or worked outside your home jurisdiction? What did you learn from it?
The time I spent in France is very rewarding. It was a great opportunity for me to broaden my vision. I got to know the foreign culture and established friendship with people around the world. Not only my foreign language skills became much better, I devoted myself to the study of laws of various countries. And it was my experience abroad that inspired me to become a lawyer focusing outbound investment.
After coming back to China, I was involved in extensive outbound investment deals and assisted many mining and energy companies to establish their business in the foreign countries such as Congo, Cameroon, Australia, Indonesia, and Myanmar. I believe there is always a bigger world out there waiting for us to explore. We’ve been waiting so long for the Chinese companies to grow. And now it’s the time for the Chinese companies to walk out of the gate of our country. And I and my teammates are always ready to help.
When did you become partner?
I became a partner since I joined Zhonglun Law Firm in 1997.
What deal/case in your career stands out the most and why?
Every deal I’ve done and every client I’ve assisted is worth memorizing. But if we are talking about the most challenging deal here, Sicomines’s DRC project might stand out in my career. It was a billion-dollar deal and it was challenging because we had to involve two sectors of arrangement, both infrastructure sector and mining sector, in a single state contract signed by DRC.
What have been your recent deals?
Assisting Wisco and CAD Fund in its iron ore mining project in Liberia, amounting over $2.6bn US dollars.
Representing Hanlong Group in its takeover of Sundance, an ASX listed company, as well as its following up investment in Cameroon, an iron ore project amounting over 4 billion US dollars.
Advising Zhejiang Huayou Cobalt Company in its A Share listing project.
What is the biggest challenge facing your market at the moment?
Language skill is always an important factor for a potential client to consider in retaining outbound investment lawyers.
What has been the most significant development in your sector in recent years?
The outbound investment deals are usually time-consuming, and involve uncertainty of the outcomes. The growing complication of the deals requires lawyers to obtain comprehensive knowledge to assist our client to achieve what they want. Such requirement calls for more frequent update of lawyers’ knowledge, especially legal and financial knowledge.
If you hadn’t been a lawyer, what would you have been?
Probably an entrepreneur.
Which country do you travel to most frequently and which country do you like the best?
I travel to Democratic Republic of Congo a lot for business. But I like France the best for its humanities and cultural environment.
What is your favourite book?
One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel José de la Concordia GarcíaMárquez.
What is your favourite restaurant?
Xian Xiang Ji, a Hunan food restaurant.