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    Legal & Compliance

    Don’t get lost in the maze of Chinese rules & regulations


    The Chinese did not invent bureaucracies but the businesses environment in China is known to be highly regulated for nearly everything. Anything to do with business still requires various levels of registration, compliance and/or approval from usually more than one authority. You can easily get lost in the maze of rules and regulations.

    Foreign companies get penalised much more severely by the Chinese government when there is a violation, as evidenced by previous high profile cases. So make sure you follow the Chinese regulations at the outset of the operation and protect yourself.

    Many familiar large law firms operate in China now. However, if you have a limited budget for your enquiry, the bilingual freelancers on Crayfish may be able to provide a good service to fit your needs. Post your project and get legal support now.

    How much protection do I have for my intellectual property?

    China is a member of the Paris Convention on the Protection of Industrial Property and The Patent Co-operation Treaty (PCT) and its court system has vastly improved over the past 10 years for IP protection. Most forms of IPR except copyright require registration in China before protection. Remember in China, it is the “first-to-file” rule. Seek advice as soon as you intend to go to China and plan your IP protection well ahead of entering into the market.

    How regulated is China’s labour market for employers?

    China enacted three new labour laws in 2008, promoting the government’s vision of “social harmony”. These cover labour contracts, disputes and promotion and outlaw discrimination in the workplace. In some cases the laws are more rigid than in Western countries. However, enforcement is different across different regions in China, with the less developed regions being less onerous. The new laws also allow a larger role for trade unions, which has led to a few high profile strikes at foreign manufacturing firms in China.

    How do I go about setting up in China – what are the options?

    First you should be clear about the objective of your operation in China – is this for research, manufacturing, or marketing & sales? Second, will you be expected to receive payments locally in the Chinese currency? Finally, how many people do you envisage hiring in the next three years? The answers to these will lead to different options, each with their pros and cons. Visit “China Library” for a summary of these options courtesy of China Business Solutions, our sister company.

    Legal & Compliance Skills

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