South Korea: the next frontier?

South Korea has seen an influx of international firms in the past two years, with the likes of Baker & McKenzie, DLA Piper, Paul Hastings and Squire Patton Boggs all keen to take advantage of the market’s liberalisation.

However, as we explore in this week’s special report on South Korea, the country may not hold the rich pickings it once did. Squeezed by a slowdown in China to the west and competitive pressure from Japan to the east, the Korean Republic is struggling to breathe new life into its anaemic economy.

Against this backdrop, regulatory developments have seen international outfits move from having representative offices only to offering dual international and local advice in partnership with local firms. The next and final step in liberalisation will allow the foreigners to offer domestic advice too – something that will require considerable investment to achieve.

With less than two years until European firms can take advantage of full liberalisation and three years until US firms can, are any likely to take the plunge?

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  • Simmons & Simmons launches Chinese IP practice through Rouse hire
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