International Trade Elections & Politics General Business

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Private Equity In Africa: Context, Opportunities, And Risks

In this issue: - Overview - Macroeconomics - Politics and policy - The practice of private equity in Africa - Opportunities for private equity in Africa - An excerpt from Overview. In...more

Schlumberger OFAC Enforcement Action – A New Threat?

I have been writing lately about the rise of OFAC sanctions enforcement. OFAC and the Justice Department have started to build a close working relationship similar to that between the SEC and the Justice Department relating...more

Unusual Bipartisanship Makes New Free Trade Agreements More Likely

Major new free trade agreements are on the horizon. For the past several years, the Obama Administration has been negotiating two new major free trade agreements: the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) and the Trans-Atlantic...more

Product Law: Legal regime for electronic products in Germany set to change

By way of the Directive on Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment (Directive 2012/19/EU; so-called WEEE Directive), the EU has required its Member States to adapt their electrical and electronic equipment law until 2014....more

A Week of Trade: Congress Advances Numerous Trade Bills

This past week saw more congressional activity on trade legislation than has been seen in some time. Both houses of US Congress marked up and advanced badly needed and long-overdue legislation in a number of areas relevant to...more

U.S. Brand Holders Anticipating Business in Cuba Can and Should Protect Trademarks

As we noted in our Client Alert on December 18, 2014, President Obama has announced that he will take steps to ease regulations that have largely prevented U.S. companies from conducting business in Cuba for more than 50...more

Sanctions on Iran following preliminary agreement with the P5+1

On 2 April 2015, Iran and the P5+1 nations (United States, United Kingdom, France, Russia, China and Germany) reached a framework agreement in respect of Iran limiting its nuclear programme in exchange for sanctions relief....more

The Petrobras Scandal and Corruption of Political Parties Under the FCPA

When does bribery and corruption move from a business issue to a political issue to a national issue? Why should US companies be held to the gold standard of anti-corruption laws? Should the US government even care if US...more

China Update - April 2015

In This Issue: - Quote of the Week - U.S.-China Relations - Trade - Energy & Environment - Excerpt from Quote of the Week: “The Asia-Pacific region – and you know the U.S. is a Pacific power – is...more

"Facilitation": A New Tool for Extraterritorial Sanctions Enforcement?

Recent OFAC and DOJ actions have focused on certain entities – overseas financial institutions – and particular conduct – US dollar clearing and associated “stripping.” The DOJ’s recent $232 million settlement and negotiated...more

Financial Services Weekly News Roundup - April 2015 #3

DOL Fiduciary Standard Proposal. The Department of Labor issued a notice of proposed rulemaking including a definition of the term “fiduciary,” a conflict of interest rule for retirement investments, new exemptions and...more

Trade & Manufacturing Alert - April 2015

In This Issue: - Made in America: U.S. Manufacturing and the President's 2015 Trade Policy Agenda - Congressional Action Allowing Commerce to Retroactively Apply the Subsidy Law to Exports From China Survives a...more

New Executive Order Authorizes Economic Sanctions to Combat Malicious Cyber Activity

Calling cyber threats “one of the most serious economic and national security challenges to the United States” and declaring a national emergency relating to those threats, on April 1, 2015, President Obama issued an...more

Trade & Manufacturing - News of Note - April 2015

United States Imposes New Sanctions Against Certain Venezuelan Officials - On March, 8 President Barack Obama signed an Executive Order blocking, or "freezing," the property and interests in property of "certain...more

Parameters of Iran Sanctions Relief Announced

On April 2, 2015, the United States and its P5+1 negotiating partners, together with Iran, announced the key parameters of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) regarding Iran’s nuclear program. Further details are...more

Made in America: U.S. Manufacturing and the President's 2015 Trade Policy Agenda

The Office of the United States Trade Representative (USTR) issued President Obama's 2015 Trade Policy Agenda (the President's Trade Agenda) on March 4. Many of the policy goals in the President's Trade Agenda are objectives...more

P5+1 Reach Framework Agreement with Iran

As widely reported, the United States, China, France, Germany, Russia and the United Kingdom (the P5+1), coordinated by the European Union’s High Representative, reached a Framework Agreement with Iran on April 2, 2015,...more

Update: Iran Nuclear Deal

Iran and the Western powers have agreed to agree again. On April 2, 2015, the so-called P5+1 (the United States, the UK, China, France, and Russia) along with the EU, have joined Iran in announcing that they have reached a...more

OFAC Announces Settlement with Money Services Business for Violations of Sanctions Programs

On March 23, Department of the Treasury’s OFAC announced a settlement agreement with a large money services business (MSB) for failing to implement an effective compliance program “to identify, interdict, and prevent...more

A Modern Approach to Tackling CFIUS Concerns

Foreign direct investment (FDI) into American businesses is a major component of the U.S. economy. American companies use FDI to fund domestic manufacturing plants, research and development facilities, and support the growth...more

UK Budget 2015 – Key Tax Measures

The Chancellor of the Exchequer’s final Budget of the current Parliament, given on 18 March 2015, was held in the shadow of the UK’s general election on 7 May 2015. With the backdrop of the UK’s GDP growth increasing,...more

Commerzbank: Remediation Under the Government Hammer and Microscope (Part III of III)

The Commerzbank bank case provides a chilling story of a systemic breakdown in compliance, and the far-reaching consequences of such a breakdown. Even in the context of a systemic breakdown, there are valuable lessons to be...more

'Protectionism' In M&A: A Mixed Picture

When a national ‘champion’ is at stake, lively political and media debate often follows, sometimes even where the sector involved is not particularly ‘sensitive’. This is unsurprising in markets facing slow economic growth...more

Bridging the Week - March 2015 #3

CFTC Chairman Suggests European-CFTC Agreement on Clearinghouse Equivalency May Come Soon; Skin in the Game Debate Needs More Study - In an address before the 40th annual FIA Boca Raton International Futures Industry...more

Commerzbank’s Compliance Catastrophe — Flouting Sanctions and BSA/AML Laws (Part II of III)

Sometimes a picture is very clear but legal words and concepts are proffered in an attempt to disguise and even deceive. As set forth in the factual statements outlined by the government, and agreed to by Commerzbank, it is...more

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