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Press releases and law firm thought leadership

This page is dedicated to keeping readers informed of the latest news and thought leadership articles from law firms across the globe.

If your firm wishes to publish press releases or articles, please contact Shehab Khurshid on +44 (0) 207 396 5689 or


[South Korea] Government to Strengthen Investigation of Environmental Crimes through a Newly ...

[Government to Strengthen Investigation of Environmental Crimes through a Newly Established Task Force]

In an effort to strengthen its ability to better enforce major criminal violations of environmental regulations, the Ministry of Environment (the “MOE”) newly established the “Central Environmental Crime Investigation Task Force” (“the Task Force”).  

[South Korea] Environment Ministry Issues New Administrative Regulations to Guide the Disclosure of

Environment Ministry Issues New Administrative Regulations to Guide the Disclosure of Information on Chemical Substance

Effective December 31, 2015, Korea’s Ministry of Environment (the “MOE”) promulgated the "Regulations on the Management of Chemical Substance Investigation Results and Information Disclosure System" (the “Management Regulations”).

[South Korea] MOE’s Leniency Program: MOE Plans to Enforce Regulations to Combat Illegal Manufactu

On January 1, 2015, the Act on the Registration and Evaluation of Chemicals (“K-REACH”) and the Chemicals Control Act (“CCA”) took effect.  In this regard, the Ministry of Environment (“MOE”) plans to provide guidelines on the violations of K-REACH and CCA, and begin to enforce regulations against the violations in the near future.

[South Korea] Major Changes in Environmental Policy in 2015

Enforcement of the Act on the Registration, Evaluation, Etc. of Chemicals

The Act on the Registration, Evaluation, Etc. of Chemicals (“K-REACH”) and its subordinate regulations, i.e., the Enforcement Decree and the Enforcement Rules to K-REACH, took effect as of January 1, 2015. Under K-REACH, businesses handling chemicals are subject to more stringent government control; for instance, any person who intends to import (i) a new chemical, (ii) a pre-existing chemical of one ton or more per year, or (iii) a product containing hazardous chemicals, is required to file the respective report with the regulatory authority.

Proposed Legislation for Environmental Pollution Damage Compensation Has Passed National Assembly

On December 10, 2014, the proposed legislation for the Environmental Pollution Damage Compensation and Recovery Act (the “Environmental Damage Compensation Act”) was passed by the National Assembly by unanimous votes of the present members. This Act will enter into force one year after the date of its promulgation, provided that, however, the obligation to subscribe environmental liability insurance under Article 17 will be enforced 18 months after tis promulgation.

South Korea: Draft Act on Compensation and Relief of Environmental Pollution Damage

The Korean Government has launched a government project to establish a system to compensate and insure against environmental pollution damage, and is pursuing the introduction of a legal relief system for environmental pollution damage. Such Government initiative is intended to address the current situation where environmental pollution accidents inflict serious damage on society due to the enormous amount of tax money that is required for curing the pollution, while companies that caused the accident sometimes go bankrupt because they cannot bear the financial burden of paying the compensation. Moreover, the victims of environmental pollution accidents are often unable to obtain proper compensation due to the burden of proving that their injury resulted from the pollution or due to the prolonged litigation process which is unavoidable in light of the nature of environmental pollution.

South Korea: Update on K-REACH and CCA

As noted in our previous issue, the Act on Registration, Evaluation, Authorization and Restriction of Chemical Substances (K-REACH) and Chemicals Control Act (CCA) were recently enacted. Below are some of the key updates on K-REACH and CCA.


South Korea: K-REACH and Chemicals Control Act: Advance Notice of Draft Subordinate Statutes

On February 18, 2014, the Ministry of Environment of Korea ("MoE") announced an advance notice for the draft subordinate statutes of the K-REACH and Chemicals Control Act ("CCA"). Provided below are the key provisions of the legislation that is to take effect on January 1, 2015.


Korean REACH Legislation Update

On May 22, 2013, the Korean National Assembly officially announced the Act on Registration, Evaluation, Authorization and Restriction of Chemical Substances (the "Korean REACH") which the National Assembly passed on April 30, 2013. The Korean REACH will take effect on January 1, 2015. Relative to the earlier version announced in February 2011, the draft bill submitted to the National Assembly in September 2012 was more lenient in its requirements. However, due to increased scrutiny arising from several highly publicized accidents involving chemical substances in recent months, a more stringent version of the Korean REACH has now been passed, which includes reporting requirement for certain products.

South Korea: Stricter Enforcement of Environmental Regulations under New

At the end of 2012, the Ministry of Environment tested samples of untreated waste water from 60 randomly selected factories, and the results revealed that 44 of those were in violation of the Water Quality and Ecosystem Conservation Act (the "Water Quality Act"). The Ministry followed up with a second round of investigations in early 2013, testing all 318 Class 1 waste-producers (facilities are categorized into Classes 1 through 5 based on the volume of their generated waste, with Class 1 being the heaviest producers), of which 163 were found to be in
violation of the Water Quality Act. These investigations evidence a change in the policy direction of the Ministry of Environment to implement stricter enforcement of the Water Quality Act as opposed to the past lax enforcement of the local municipalities.

Owner and Transferee Strict Liability for Soil Contamination Damages Ruled Unconstitutional

In cases involving soil contamination, it is usually difficult to find liable parties when soil contamination damages are discovered, primarily because of the long-term nature of soil contamination.

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Dinner with GC -
Korea 2018

  • China and Hong Kong GC Powerlist

    In May, The Legal 500 and GC Magazine added another country to the list of destinations for their exclusive Dinner with GC series, as South Korea’s elite in-house counsel came together at Mugunghwa in Seoul, for a closed-door discussion on the realities of the role.

    Dinner with GC - Korea 2018