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DLA Piper

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Carolyn Dong

Work +852 2103 0505
DLA Piper LLP (US)

Work Department

Finance & Projects


Carolyn specializes in project financing, particularly in the petrochemical industry, and corporate/commercial work. Carolyn has more than 25 years of corporate, legal practice and academic experience, having spent time at King & Wood Mallesons, BP (Hong Kong & Singapore), Sinopec (Beijing), and Clifford Chance (Hong Kong) and at the Faculty of Law of a university in Beijing. She has been involved in many major energy-related transactions throughout her career, including negotiation and formation of Sino-foreign joint ventures for Sinopec, BP, BASF, ExxonMobil, Dow Chemical, Shell, ConocoPhillips and also Taiwan and Japanese oil and petrochemical companies; Carolyn has led project financing negotiations with international and domestic financial institutions on behalf of joint venture companies and their sponsors.


English, Chinese (Mandarin).

China: Banking and finance

Banking and finance: foreign firms

Within: Banking and finance: foreign firms

Finance partners in DLA Piper's Hong Kong and Beijing offices are perhaps best known for advising international lenders on commodity and asset finance transactions involving Chinese borrowers, though the team has also acted for Chinese financial institutions. Recent highlights have included Paul Lee acting for Huatai Financial Holdings, as financial adviser, in relation to a HKD3.5bn loan to finance the privatisation of Bloomage BioTechnology Corp. Having grown considerably since 2016, the Hong Kong team has continued to make significant hires, having recently brought to the team Douglas Murning from Kirkland & Ellis and of counsel Tom Van Hoof from Watson Farley & Williams. Additional contacts include Hong Kong-based department head Matthias Schemuth and Carolyn Dong, who specialises in the energy sector and splits her time between Hong Kong and Beijing.

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China: Projects and energy

Projects and energy: foreign firms

Within: Projects and energy: foreign firms

Acting across the Beijing and Hong Kong offices, DLA Piper has been engaged in a considerable number of projects under the One Belt One Road initiative, where the team acts for Chinese sponsors and international banks and investors. In one example, Hong Kong-based Matthias Schemuth is advising an investment manager on an investment in a foreign energy company and the subsequent financing of upstream oil and gas projects in several African jurisdictions. The team is also particularly active in Indonesia-facing projects, where Carolyn Dong is acting for China Shenhua Energy Company in relation to the development, financing, construction and operation of a $1.8bn power plant in the Jawa 7 project; she is also assisting the client with a separate, similar tendering for the Sumsel-1 power project. Dong also handles asset and M&A transactions for clients in the energy sector, which has included advising ENN Ecological Holdings (China's largest private natural gas company) on its $750m acquisition of a stake in Australian energy company Santos. Simin Yu is an active senior associate in the Shanghai office.

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Hong Kong

Banking and finance

Within: Banking and finance

DLA Piper's banking practice has gained momentum, following a number of key hires in 2017. Matthias Schemuth, who joined from Ashurst in February 2017, heads up the team, which was strengthened by the more recent arrivals of Douglas Murning and of counsel Tom Van Hoof from Kirkland & Ellis and Watson Farley & Williams respectively. The group has served as a trusted adviser to clients in a number of highly complex domestic and cross-border transactions, as was evidenced when Schemuth and Van Hoof acted for ANZ (as arranger) and a syndicate of 20 banks on the $200m financing to China Water Affairs for the development, construction and purchase of water-integrated projects in the PRC. Schemuth has also acted for Rabobank in a series of domestic Hong Kong and cross-border commodities finance transactions. Paul Lee is advising Huatai Financial Holdings as financial adviser on its HK$3.5bn financing of the privatisation of Bloomage BioTechnology from the Hong Kong Stock Exchange. Head of energy Carolyn Dong is another key figure.

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Projects and energy

Within: Projects and energy

Carolyn Dong and Matthias Schemuth head up the team at DLA Piper. Clients include ENN Ecological Holdings, China Energy Investment Corp (formerly China Shenhua Energy Company) and Pierfront Capital Fund Management. The team acted as international and Australian counsel for Shanghai-listed ENN, the largest private natural gas company in China, in its $750m acquisition of Hony Capital's 11.72% stake in Australian energy company, Santos.

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Foreign firms

Within: Foreign firms

DLA Piper's work in the region includes projects, capital markets and litigation. The practice was bolstered followed the arrival of projects and energy expert Matthias Schemuth from Ashurst LLP; he advised the project sponsors of the development and $3.3bn financing of a coal-fired power station in Java. He also acted for DBS Bank on its $820m financing for Huawei which is investing in a telecoms project in Indonesia in East Kalimantan. Capital markets specialist Joe Bauerschmidt is particularly active in transactions involving the energy industry. He assisted AJBB with Evergreen's attempted rights issue with the client as the standby buyer. Hong Kong-based Carolyn Dong worked with China Shenhua Energy on the development of a 2 x 1000 MW power plant in Java. Bangkok-based Timothy Tan acted for Media Nusantara on its $250m refinancing loan from Deutsche Bank, ING and Standard Chartered Bank. Also recommended is John Goulios, who focuses on international arbitration and litigation.

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Legal Developments by:
DLA Piper LLP (US)

  • Sentencing guidelines for corporate manslaughter

    In February 2010 the Sentencing Guidelines Council (the SGC) issued definitive guidelines to courts on imposing appropriate sentences for corporate manslaughter and health and safety offences causing death. The SGC states that fines imposed on companies found guilty of corporate manslaughter should not fall below £500,000, while fines in respect of health and safety offences that are a significant cause of death should be at least £100,000. Crucially, the SGC declined to provide for a fixed link between the imposed fine and the turnover or profitability of the offending company.‚Ä©
    - DLA Piper UK LLP

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