As the US-China commercial relationship has developed over the past four decades, US law firms have increasingly invested in China, and have sought to help foster a compliant and mutually beneficial business environment for foreign and Chinese clients. US law firms expanding into China provide distinct benefits to a wide clientele, not only supporting foreign multinationals but also increasingly working with Chinese investors and companies that operate both in China and abroad. These law firms have helped contribute to the growth and development of China’s legal services sector, and offer unique expertise in China’s market.
Currently, US law firms face significant barriers in China that prohibit them from fully contributing their expertise to both Chinese and foreign clients. The challenges discussed in this paper are among the most prominent faced by law firm members of the US-China Business Council (USCBC) in China.
USCBC continues to raise its concerns about legal market access issues with the US and Chinese governments, and remains active in promoting US legal industry interests with each government. USCBC will also continue to underscore these issues in its recommendations to the US-China Joint Commission on Commerce and Trade (JCCT) and its Commercial Law Working Group (CLWG).