Legal Services Market Workshop
On 19 March 2017, the Great Britain China Centre (GBCC) and the Centre for Common Law (CCL) at Renmin University of China held a workshop at the Crowne Plaza Hotel, Shanghai with the goal of furthering international dialogue on China’s legal services market. This event, organised in collaboration with the Shanghai Lawyers’ Association, built on two previous meetings held in Shenzhen in December 2015 and Beijing in March 2016 with the Shenzhen and Beijing Lawyers Associations respectively, and is part of the Centre for Common Law’s strategy to build strong links with the professions in China’s three main legal services markets.
Attendees at the event on the UK side consisted of Robert Bourns, the President of the Law Society of England and Wales, Graham Matthews, the Vice-President of the Law Society of Scotland, and Steven Thompson QC, Vice-Chair of the International Committee and Head of the China Interest Group of the Bar Council of England and Wales.
The Chinese side was led by Yu Weifeng, President of the Shanghai Lawyers Association, with the rest of the participants made up of legal practitioners representing the Beijing, Shanghai and Shaanxi Lawyers Associations, several Shanghai-based law firms, the Hong Kong Bar Association and the Law Society of Hong Kong, as well as legal scholars from Shanghai University of Political Science and Law and Renmin University Law School.
The workshop was organised in order to disseminate and gain feedback on a report commissioned by GBCC from Professor Ding of Renmin University Law School. The report gives an overview of the legal services market in China, including relevant policies and information on the opening-up of China’s legal services sector, as well as the attitudes of the profession and Chinese government towards internationalisation of the legal services market.
The event was brought to a close by the CCL Secretaries-General from both the UK and China; Ms Zhang Xiaoping, Deputy Director of the Great Britain-China Centre, and Professor Shi Yan’an, Vice Dean of Renmin University Law School.