Latest updates

Court of Rome clarifies shareholders' rights
Grieco e Associati
  • Company & Commercial
  • Italy
  • 24 February 2020

The Court of Rome Companies Tribunal has set out an important principle concerning shareholders' rights regarding certain company decisions. The court granted an interim measure and consequently declared ineffective the resolution of a company's shareholders' meeting upon the request of a shareholder who claimed that the company's board of directors had failed to provide the shareholders with documents concerning a merger operation which would lead to a change of control over the company.

New government programme sets course for expansion of renewable energies
Schoenherr
  • Energy & Natural Resources
  • Austria
  • 24 February 2020

The new government composed of the Austrian People's Party and the Green Party recently presented the government programme for 2020 to 2024, which contains comprehensive measures to promote the expansion of renewable energies. Accordingly, the Renewable Energies Expansion Act, which has been planned for a long time and was drawn up under the penultimate government, is to be enacted as quickly as possible.

Five points to look out for when signing construction contracts governed by Swiss law
LALIVE
  • Construction
  • Switzerland
  • 24 February 2020

Swiss law is commonly used for construction contracts and is generally considered to be a safe option for good reason. But Swiss law does have some particularities that international parties might not expect. This article sets out five points that international parties should look out for when signing a Swiss law construction contract. With some forethought, parties can opt to contract out of these particularities or adequately address the allocation of risk that they entail.

New opportunities for renewable energy: Austrian government programme 2020 to 2024
Schoenherr
  • Environment & Climate Change
  • Austria
  • 24 February 2020

Austria's new coalition government consisting of the People's Party and the Green Party recently published its programme for the legislative period 2020 to 2024. The programme is called Taking Responsibility for Austria and should make Austria a pioneer in climate protection. The Paris Agreement climate targets are to be met at all costs, while the Climate Protection Act should ensure that Austria does not exceed its CO2 budget.

International Patent Classification: one factor in determining whether motivation to combine multiple citations exists
Lee and Li Attorneys at Law
  • Intellectual Property
  • Taiwan
  • 24 February 2020

According to the Patent Examination Guidelines, in order to determine whether a patent application can be easily accomplished by persons ordinarily skilled in the art in view of the citations, it is necessary to consider whether there is motivation to combine multiple citations. Further, such motivation depends on whether the multiple citations are relevant or common in their technical contents.

Cybersecurity in Japan: being aware of your business partners' risks
Nagashima Ohno & Tsunematsu
  • White Collar Crime
  • Japan
  • 24 February 2020

A recent high-profile theft of hard drives containing sensitive personal data has highlighted the need for Japan-based companies to ensure that their cybersecurity measures include processes for disposing of personal data that has been entrusted to them and reviewing their security controls regarding business partners who may come into contact with personal data. The case involved an employee at an IP recycling company who stole nearly 4,000 data storage devices that were destined for disposal.

New regulations on trading with natural resources
Lenz & Staehelin
  • Energy & Natural Resources
  • Switzerland
  • 24 February 2020

This article provides a non-exhaustive analysis of the legal situation regarding trading with natural resources in Switzerland, with a primary focus on new regulations and reference to foreign financial institutions. At the beginning of 2020, a new regulation came into force which also affected trading with natural resources. In general, trading in physical commodities does not require a licence, whereas trading in securities or derivatives on a commercial basis is subject to licensing requirements.

Supreme People's Court Honda OEM case: end of a long story?
Wanhuida Intellectual Property
  • Intellectual Property
  • China
  • 24 February 2020

When goods are manufactured in China by an original equipment manufacturer factory for export, the foreign buyer is not always the owner in China of the trademark that is affixed on the goods. But what if the trademark is registered in the name of a third party and such third party decides to sue the factory for infringement and stop the export of the goods? This is a long-debated question of which the courts have demonstrated different understandings.

Update on DEPA privatisation
Rokas Law Firm
  • Energy & Natural Resources
  • Greece
  • 24 February 2020

Under the new law on the liberalisation of the energy market, the Public Natural Gas Company (DEPA) will be spun off into three distinct undertakings: DEPA Infrastructure, DEPA Commercial and DEPA International Projects. The privatisation tender is organised by the Hellenic Republic Asset Development Fund. Parties intending to participate in the tender are requested to meet various legal, financial and technical requirements.

Obtaining patent protection for software in Europe
GEVERS
  • Intellectual Property
  • European Union
  • 24 February 2020

Under the European Patent Convention, a computer program per se is not considered a patentable invention; rather, program listings per se are protected by copyright. However, in many cases, a computer program can be considered a technical solution to a technical problem and is thus patentable. For a European patent to be granted, applicants must show that this solution is novel and involves an inventive step with respect to prior art.

Court sides with importer in not paying duties on royalties
Arent Fox LLP
  • International Trade
  • USA
  • 21 February 2020

An importer of Giorgio Armani apparel recently secured a victory in the Court of International Trade in its dispute with US Customs and Border Protection (CBP). The case considered whether the importer was required under US customs laws to pay duties on advertising fees and trademark royalty fees as part of the value of the goods declared to CBP.

Macau responds to regulatory trends with new Cybersecurity Law
Rato, Ling, Lei & Cortés Advogados
  • Tech, Data, Telecoms & Media
  • Macau
  • 21 February 2020

In June 2019 the Legislative Assembly of the Macau Special Administrative Region (SAR) enacted the Cybersecurity Law. Prior to this, no legislation covered cybersecurity issues in the Macau SAR. As such, this new law reflects the region's efforts to respond to the latest regulatory trends regarding privacy and security and establish a legal regime for such matters. The main purpose of the law is to protect the networks, systems and data of critical infrastructure operators of the Macau SAR.

Calculating share of Russian immovable property for corporate income tax purposes
Gorodissky & Partners
  • Corporate Tax
  • Russia
  • 21 February 2020

At the end of 2019, the Federal Tax Service issued clarifications on calculating the share of Russian immovable property in the indirect sale of such property for corporate income tax purposes. The clarifications are especially relevant as the Russian tax authorities' powers have grown following the signing and ratification of a number of international agreements on the exchange of tax information in recent years.

Maximum pressure squared: Trump turns up Iran sanctions amplifier
Arent Fox LLP
  • International Trade
  • USA
  • 21 February 2020

President Trump recently issued Executive Order 13902, which places additional large swaths of the Iranian economy – and those outside Iran which support it – in the crosshairs of US sanctions. Third-country companies doing business with Iran's construction, mining, manufacturing or textiles sectors are now at greater risk of being sanctioned.

Public consultation on techno-finance sandbox launched
Legance – Avvocati Associati
  • Banking
  • Italy
  • 21 February 2020

The Ministry of Economy and Finance recently launched a public consultation process on a draft decree setting out the rules for a fintech sector regulatory sandbox. The draft decree aims to promote technological innovation by allowing fintech companies to test new IT services and products in the financial, credit and insurance sectors under the supervision of the competent authorities for a limited period.

Blockchain and cryptocurrency regulation 2020
Carey Olsen Bermuda
  • Banking
  • Bermuda
  • 21 February 2020

The current government was elected in 2017, having undertaken to create new economic pillars in Bermuda, identify new opportunities for economic diversification and seek local and overseas investment to develop new local industry and thereby create jobs in Bermuda. Since its election, the government has enthusiastically embraced the fintech sector and the potential that it offers and has repeatedly expressed its intention for Bermuda to be a significant centre for this industry.

Cryptocurrency treated as property in freezing order
Allen & Overy LLP
  • Banking
  • United Kingdom
  • 21 February 2020

The High Court recently granted a freezing order over £1.5 million worth of bitcoin and ethereum cryptocurrency against a trading platform and its directors in only the second known example of the court treating cryptocurrency as property. This decision will provide further reassurance of the English courts' willingness to deal with cryptocurrency as property.

FinSA/FinIA: proposed follow-up regulation by FINMA
Meyerlustenberger Lachenal
  • Banking
  • Switzerland
  • 21 February 2020

The new Financial Services Act and Financial Institutions Act came into force on 1 January 2020 together with the implementing ordinances. These laws oblige the Swiss Financial Market Supervisory Authority (FINMA) to pass a number of implementing provisions pertaining to selected, mainly technical issues. As a result, FINMA has created a new, streamlined Financial Institutions Ordinance and introduced amendments to several current FINMA ordinances and circulars.

OnDemand Cybersecurity trends and issues: Mexico
Hogan Lovells BSTL SC
  • Mexico
  • 21 February 2020

Cyberattacks on public entities and private companies in Mexico look set to grow exponentially in 2020. However, Mexico has no national cybersecurity, so the private sector has instead introduced self-regulatory schemes to try and protect itself against cyberattacks. This video examines the main cybersecurity issues that businesses in Mexico face today, including the recent growth of 'cryptojacking'.

Online harms: government publishes response to consultation on proposals for internet regulation
Bird & Bird LLP
  • Tech, Data, Telecoms & Media
  • United Kingdom
  • 21 February 2020

The government recently published its initial response to the public consultation on the Online Harms White Paper, in the first substantive update since its publication in April 2019. The consultation response is described as an indication of the direction of travel and it is clear that the policy development process is at an early stage. Certain things have been clarified, while much remains up for grabs. The government's full response to the consultation is expected in Spring 2020.

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