Steptoe & Johnson LLP Opens Office in Beijing

Steptoe & Johnson LLP Press Release
March 1, 2010

Leading Washington D.C. -Based Law Firm to Advise Clients in Beijing

(March 1, 2010, Washington, DC & Beijing) – Steptoe & Johnson LLP, a leading international law firm, today announced the opening of an office in Beijing, China. With offices in the world’s major regulatory centers including Washington, D.C., Brussels, London, and now Beijing, Steptoe advises international companies on the legal and regulatory developments that affect their businesses.

“Our long history serving US and international clients with Asian business interests provides a strong foundation on which to build in Beijing,” said Roger E. Warin, Steptoe’s Chair. “This new office will enhance our ability to provide services to multinational companies operating in China as well as Chinese companies expanding beyond the People’s Republic of China.”

Steptoe advises companies doing business in and from China on a wide range of matters, including international trade, market access, export control, antitrust, and compliance with US and European environmental, product safety, and other regulations.  The Beijing office will help Steptoe expand its work in these areas and better serve its clients. The firm’s International Trade and Investment practice helps companies seeking to enter and expand their business in the Chinese market.  The firm currently advises the Government of China on matters before the World Trade Organization. Led by Edward J. Krauland, the firm’s International Regulation and Compliance practice advises clients on sensitive regulatory issues, including US and European export control rules. Steptoe also maintains an internationally recognized anti-corruption practice under the direction of Lucinda A. Low and Patrick M. Norton that counsels clients subject to the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (“FCPA”) and various anti-corruption laws around the world including throughout Asia. The practice also represents clients in internal investigations, enforcement actions, and collateral proceedings, including before the World Bank and other institutions.

“China’s emergence onto the world stage has had a profound impact on the global economy,” said Susan G. Esserman, head of Steptoe’s International Department and former Deputy US Trade Representative during the Clinton Administration. “The complex trade and regulatory changes underway in China affect companies investing in the market and can have implications in other key regulatory markets.  With Chinese companies now actively expanding into US and European markets, they are encountering opportunities as well as trade and regulatory challenges. Steptoe’s strength is helping our clients to address these issues and to put them in the best possible competitive position.”

Eric C. Emerson, a partner in Steptoe’s International Trade and Investment practice, is Managing Partner of the Beijing office. Mr. Emerson has been with Steptoe for 18 years and advises companies on all types of international trade issues, including US trade litigation and access to US markets.  “Our decision to open an office in Beijing reflects the firm’s longstanding and continuing commitment to serving clients in this market,” said Mr. Emerson. “Steptoe will provide advice to companies participating in the Chinese market as well as Chinese companies doing business beyond China’s borders.”

Joining Mr. Emerson in the China practice is Susan Munro, a new partner who recently joined Steptoe from the Shanghai office of a major international law firm.  “It is a particular pleasure to welcome Susan to the firm. She brings more than ten years of experience in China where in addition to her legal capabilities, her business acumen will be of significant benefit to our clients,” said Mr. Emerson.

Ms. Munro has spent more than ten years advising financial institutions, multinational companies, and investment funds on business and investment issues. Her experience includes advising clients on market entry and exit strategies, acquisitions, and regulatory matters. She also has conducted numerous FCPA and earnings management investigations and represented clients in arbitrations and cross border litigation.   

Ms. Munro is a solicitor qualified in England & Wales and is a non-practicing barrister called to the Bar of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region of the People’s Republic of China. She graduated in Chinese from the University of London and also has an LLB degree.  After graduating Ms. Munro undertook postgraduate studies at Fudan University in Shanghai, where she is an arbitrator of the Shanghai Arbitration Commission.  

Another key member of the firm’s China practice is Ying Huang, who has spent seven years as a Foreign Legal Consultant in Steptoe’s Washington, DC office. Ms. Huang has played an important role in the firm’s market access initiatives.

The firm’s office is located at China Central Place, 29th Floor, Tower 2, 79 Jianguo Road in the Chaoyang District of Beijing.

About Steptoe & Johnson LLP

In more than 60 years of practice, Steptoe & Johnson LLP has earned an international reputation for vigorous representation of clients before governmental agencies, successful advocacy in litigation and arbitration, and creative and practical advice in guiding business transactions. The firm has offices in Beijing, Brussels, Century City, Chicago, London, Los Angeles, New York, Phoenix, and Washington, D.C. For more information, visit www.steptoe.com.

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