Countless ties


Do you know your data? Do you understand the information that your company needs to protect it? Although data is borderless, the relevant laws issued by various countries, including China, try to offer data storage and boundaries, and so are essential for in-house counsel and law firms to be familiar with.

China-Business-Law-Journal-coverIn our cover feature Data overdrive, we interview AlixPartners’ director David White who shares his knowledge on data localization and other hot security issues, including asset recovery and data protection. China’s continuous efforts to score all businesses by a unified social credit system, and the new E-commerce Law to protect the security and normal operation of the world’s largest e-commerce network, also make for interesting reading.

Will the EU’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) affect Chinese business players? If EU residents come to your storefront or website in China, probably not. But in other cases, it is likely that a customer database is stored on a server in one country, and is subject to the privacy laws of other countries at the same time.

As an expert in data privacy and security, White gives sound advice to Chinese companies in the process of building an effective in-house mechanism for data compliance, and stresses the importance of improving information lifecycle governance.

Nature of perpetual bonds explores this no-fixed-maturity-date financial instrument that has become increasingly popular in recent years. For a debtor, perpetual bonds offer numerous advantages, such as improving its financial statements, reducing its asset-liability ratio, and pre-tax deduction of interest. For investors, how these bonds heighten the debtors’ willingness to perform can be an issue.

Wang Jie, senior legal counsel at Ping An Pension, talks about the terms, with different levels of binding force, for investors to select perpetual bond agreements, and analyzes their feasibility. Against a backdrop of a lack of legislation governing perpetual bond products in mainland China, she discusses the nature of perpetual bonds – whether it can be recognized as a financial liability or an equity instrument – by comparing it with preferred stocks, and gives practical advice to investors.

The number of wealthy families is rising significantly in China. Many first generations of family businesses are now getting on in years, but the issue of succession has not been addressed. Meanwhile, with the implementation of the Common Reporting Standards (CRS) facilitating tax information exchange among countries, family members who have foreign residency, overseas assets or wealth management tools may need to engage with legal experts for advice. Family wealth management talks about what is needed for a successful passing-on of family control, and analyzes the foreign elements in private wealth management.