<a class=DLA Piper anticipates Korean liberalisation” />DLA Piper has boosted its ties with a South Korean ally ahead of the possible liberalisation of the country’s legal market.

DLA Piper has seconded a lawyer to Seoul-based firm Lee & Ko to help build on its referral relationship, although ;both ;firms denied the partnership was ­exclusive.

Foreign firms are currently banned from opening offices in South Korea, but that will change if a new trade agreement with the US is approved by the governments of both countries.

However, even under the new legislation, international firms would still be barred from employing local lawyers.

Thirty-three-partner Lee & Ko is one of the largest firms in Korea, with a strong reputation in banking and finance and IP.

Most Korean firms have relationships with a number of international firms.

DLA Piper Asia managing director Alastair Da Costa said: “We have a six-month secondee with Lee & Ko and it’s an example of the good relationships we have with the major law firms in Korea.”