Latest updates

Judicial authorisation of transfer of shares with restricted transferability
  • Company & Commercial
  • Austria
  • 17 February 2020

The Supreme Court recently dealt, for the first time, with the judicial authorisation of a transfer of shares with restricted transferability in joint stock companies. The court's legal reasoning will be of great interest, especially for parties undertaking transactions where only a block of shares is sold and a transfer restriction is included in the articles of association, as is often the case in Austria.

Conditional acceptance of trademark applications
KISCH IP
  • Intellectual Property
  • South Africa
  • 17 February 2020

Trademark applications are examined by the Office of the Registrar of Trademarks approximately eight to 10 months after their date of application. This article discusses several possible conditions that examiners often prescribe for accepting trademark applications and which applicants must therefore consider before filing.

Draft Promotion of Electricity Generation in Offshore Wind Farms Act published
Kubas Kos Gałkowski
  • Energy & Natural Resources
  • Poland
  • 17 February 2020

The draft Promotion of Electricity Generation in Offshore Wind Farms Act was recently published on the Government Legislation Centre's website. Among other things, the proposed act aims to create a regulatory environment that encourages investors to carry out offshore wind farm projects. In turn, this will enable Poland to fulfil its obligations under the EU Promotion of Energy from Renewable Sources Directive.

SPC clarifies requirements for citing prior use defence in trademark infringement cases
Wanhuida Intellectual Property
  • Intellectual Property
  • China
  • 17 February 2020

A recent Supreme People's Court (SPC) decision clarified the requirements to cite the prior use defence under Article 59.3 of the Trademark Law. In this regard, the court stated that the only person eligible to cite this defence is the prior user themselves and that such use must have occurred prior to the registration application and the trademark owner's use of the registered trademark. Further, for the first time, the SPC made it clear that geographical scope is a key element in defining the original scope of use.

Initial approach to General Circular Economy Law initiative
Hogan Lovells BSTL SC
  • Environment & Climate Change
  • Mexico
  • 17 February 2020

In October 2019 the General Circular Economy Law initiative was presented to the Senate for discussion and approval. The initiative was prepared in response to Mexico's increasing waste generation and aims to coordinate the attempts of the municipal, state and federal authorities to address this problem. As such, the initiative proposes granting several new powers to each level of government in order to foster the creation of a circular economy in Mexico.

OGA launches mediation pilot for resolving UKCS licence disputes
CMS Cameron McKenna Nabarro Olswang LLP
  • Energy & Natural Resources
  • United Kingdom
  • 17 February 2020

The Oil and Gas Authority (OGA) recently launched a year-long UK Continental Shelf (UKCS) mediation pilot, which aims to test the extent to which mediation can assist in resolving disputes involving licences in the UKCS. The OGA has consistently emphasised that it would prefer to exercise its influencing rather than its regulatory role in assisting the industry to achieve the Maximising Economic Recovery Strategy for the United Kingdom, and sees mediation as a potentially helpful option.

Copyright protection and Fair Trade Act: handbag design issues
Lee and Li Attorneys at Law
  • Intellectual Property
  • Taiwan
  • 17 February 2020

In the ever-changing fashion industry, every signature handbag design represents the designer's endeavour and the brand's goodwill. However, whether a handbag design is protected under the Copyright Act remains controversial. In recent civil decisions, the IP Court has demonstrated how the Taiwanese courts approach this issue.

NVE will not extend commissioning deadlines beyond 31 December 2021
Advokatfirmaet Simonsen Vogt Wiig AS
  • Energy & Natural Resources
  • Norway
  • 17 February 2020

The Norwegian Water Resources and Energy Directorate recently announced restrictions on its practice of extending commissioning deadlines for wind power farms. The purpose of extending commissioning deadlines was to meet the political goal of promoting and supporting investments in new wind power farms. However, according to a recent report, concessions for wind power may prevent the positive alternative development of the relevant land and prolong local conflicts.

National Advertising Division refers supplement advertising to FTC
Hogan Lovells
  • Tech, Data, Telecoms & Media
  • USA
  • 14 February 2020

A recent action by the National Advertising Division (NAD), a self-regulatory arm of the Better Business Bureau, illustrates that advertisers that participate but decline to be bound by an NAD decision can expect to be referred to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC). The NAD recently announced that it had referred advertising claims made by a dietary supplement company to the FTC for further review, following a challenge by the Council for Responsible Nutrition.

Data protection post-Brexit: a game of 3D chess
Fieldfisher LLP
  • Tech, Data, Telecoms & Media
  • United Kingdom
  • 14 February 2020

The year 2019 was one of high-octane political drama for the United Kingdom, culminating in its withdrawal from the European Union. While there was no cliff edge on 31 January 2020, there are significant challenges ahead, including in the cross-cutting area of data protection, which could affect many UK businesses.

First unilateral export control on AI software issued
Arent Fox LLP
  • International Trade
  • USA
  • 14 February 2020

After a more than one-year wait, the Department of Commerce Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS) has imposed controls on its first 'emerging technology' – software specially designed to automate the analysis of geospatial imagery. This software now requires a BIS authorisation to be exported or re-exported to any country other than Canada. Companies that develop or use AI to solve geospatial problems or in geospatial applications must review the new rules closely.

Draft rules on net neutrality issued for public consultation
Hogan Lovells BSTL SC
  • Tech, Data, Telecoms & Media
  • Mexico
  • 14 February 2020

In December 2019 the Federal Telecommunications Institute issued draft rules for public consultation to further regulate net neutrality in Mexico. Further discussions are anticipated following the consultation period and the definitive rules are expected to be published in mid-2020. Nonetheless, the publication of draft rules to regulate net neutrality is a positive step which has long been awaited by both industry players and non-governmental organisations.

Competition aspects of merger control: 2019 M&A status report
ELIG Gurkaynak Attorneys-at-Law
  • Competition & Antitrust
  • Turkey
  • 13 February 2020

The Competition Board recently published its annual M&A status report, which outlines statistics on merger control decisions with regard to the number of transactions, the parties' country of origin, economic activities and transaction values. The board reviewed a total of 208 mergers and acquisitions in 2019, a 7% reduction compared with 2018.

Court discharges interim injunctions granted pursuant to Section 11 of Arbitration Act
Shearn Delamore & Co
  • Arbitration & ADR
  • Malaysia
  • 13 February 2020

The high court recently set aside interim injunctions which had been granted pursuant to Section 11 of the Arbitration Act 2005 following an inter partes hearing. With this decision, the high court has confirmed that interim injunctions granted pursuant to Section 11 of the Arbitration Act may be set aside on evidence of suppression of material facts leading to the grant of the interim injunctions and if there has been a material change of circumstances since such interim measures were granted.

Mobile phones may cause brain tumours: Turin Court of Appeals revives debate
  • Product Regulation & Liability
  • Italy
  • 13 February 2020

After a two-year dispute, the Turin Court of Appeals has dismissed the appeal filed by the National Insurance Provider (INAIL) and upheld the first-instance decision issued by the Court of Ivrea in 2017, which established causation between extensive work-related use of mobile phones and brain tumours and ordered INAIL to compensate the claimant with a lifelong payment.

Understanding FTC's monetary equitable remedies under Section 13(b) for antitrust violations
Norton Rose Fulbright US LLP
  • Competition & Antitrust
  • USA
  • 13 February 2020

Until recently, the Federal Trade Commission's (FTC's) ability to seek monetary equitable remedies (particularly disgorgement and restitution) for alleged antitrust violations went virtually unchallenged. However, the most recent appellate case that interprets the FTC's monetary equitable remedies under Section 13(b) of the FTC Act leaves open many questions about the FTC's ability to seek monetary equitable remedies in antitrust cases pursuant to Section 13(b).

Canadian Institute for Health Information publishes drug spending statistics
Smart & Biggar
  • Healthcare & Life Sciences
  • Canada
  • 12 February 2020

The Canadian Institute for Health Information recently published statistics on drug spending, finding that in 2018 approximately 40% of drug spending was spent on 2% of beneficiaries. Of this 2%, three out of five individuals used a drug therapy that cost C$10,000 or more per year (eg, antivirals or biologics for rheumatoid arthritis or Crohn's disease).

Rainbow workplaces: Transgender Persons Act
Shardul Amarchand Mangaldas & Co
  • Employment & Benefits
  • India
  • 12 February 2020

The Transgender Persons Act came into force with effect from 10 January 2020 and aims to protect transgender persons' rights and welfare, particularly with regard to employment. Among other things, employers must ensure that transgender employees face no discrimination in matters relating to employment, including recruitment, promotion and other related issues.

Potential for lucrative cannabis industry in South Africa
ENSafrica
  • Healthcare & Life Sciences
  • South Africa
  • 12 February 2020

There have been a number of key developments in South African life sciences law relating to cannabis in recent years, including amendments to the Medicines and Related Substances Act 1965, such that products which contain only cannabidiol – when intended for therapeutic purposes – can now be obtained from a pharmacist by prescription. Further, cannabis-related trademark applications will now be accepted on the condition that the products comply with the standards set by the health minister.

No time wasted: years as dependent contractor included in calculation of employee's notice of termination
Fasken
  • Employment & Benefits
  • Canada
  • 12 February 2020

The Ontario Court of Appeal recently confirmed that years spent as a dependent contractor may count when calculating notice of termination for a contractor turned employee who is terminated without cause. This decision leaves open the possible argument that prior service as an independent contractor may be included in length of service for notice of termination calculations.

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