Next Generation Partners

Regulatory/compliance: foreign firms in China

Allen & Overy LLP

Allen & Overy LLP is recognised as a market leader in the financial services regulatory space, with the team acting on a full spectrum contentious and non-contentious work for an impressive client base that covers both Chinese and international investment and commercial banks, major global private banks, sovereign investors, funds, and other financial institutions. It advises on a range of matters, though is particularly adept at assisting with regulator engagement in the context of internal reorganisations, regulatory matters in inbound and outbound FIG M&A transactions, personal liabilities of directors, anti-foreign sanctions, and anti-money laundry mandates. Its joint operation with Lang Yue Law Firm means it is also well positioned to act on multi-jurisdictional cases. The team is co-led by Jane Jiang and Charlotte Robins from Shanghai and Hong Kong, respectively. Jiang is well regarded for her extensive expertise in advising financial services clients on a variety of regulatory issues and cross-border disputes and insolvencies.

Practice head(s):

Jane Jiang; Charlotte Robins

Baker McKenzie FenXun

Baker McKenzie FenXun has a first-class compliance and investigations offering, with the team acting on a full range of compliance risk matters, including internal audits and investigations, regulatory advice, risk assessment, and responses to inquiries from enforcement bodies. It has strong expertise in handling significant cross-border US issues, with a growing practice advising on US and international sanctions. Its joint operation with FenXun Partners lends to its international capabilities, with the team regularly advising on domestic regulation in China for foreign clients. It also has particular strength in handling investigations instigated by external bodies, as well as on major government-led investigations. Mini VandePol leads the team from Hong Kong, with extensive experience advising on trade sanctions, fraud, anti-bribery, and corruption investigations. Other notable practitioners include Simon Hui and Henry Chen, both of whom offer on-the-ground expertise from Shanghai. Hui regularly acts for major MNCs on internal investigations and anti-corruption matters, whilst Chen specialises in cross-border compliance and regulatory matters.

Practice head(s):

Mini VandePol

Other key lawyers:

Simon Hui; Henry Chen


‘The firm’s global reach, and its strong knowledge of local laws, transaction structures, and risk hot spots in China are key strengths. Their legal advice is pragmatic and helps achieve the best commercial outcome for their clients.’

‘Henry Chen is experienced in advising on US-China cross-border investigations and compliance matters and is particularly skilled at managing Chinese stakeholders including difficult counterparties.’

Clifford Chance LLP

Clifford Chance LLP provides a one-stop-shop service, covering both contentious and non-contentious matters. It advises on a broad array of regulatory issues, including financial regulatory, anti-money laundering, anticorruption, sanctions, export control, data privacy, and cybersecurity. It regularly handles overseas regulatory and compliance matters for Chinese financial institutions and corporations, as well as advising global banks, funds and multinational conglomerates on their China-related matters. The team is co-headed by Terry Yang, who splits his time between Shanghai and Hong Kong, and Lei Shi, who is based across the Shanghai and Beijing office. Yang has significant expertise advising both Chinese and international banks and fund managers in regulatory matters, whilst Shi specialises in anti-bribery, corruption, sanctions, and export control matters across a range of industries.

Practice head(s):

Terry Yang; Lei Shi

Work highlights

  • Advised a US auto company on their overall China data project to address regulatory requirements under automotive data security laws as well as personal information privacy laws.
  • Advising on several real estate finance restructuring projects.
  • Advising leading Hong Kong financial service providers on data and privacy issues.

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP’s regulatory and compliance practice offers a broad spectrum of advice, covering corporate crime, antitrust, trade regulations, anti-money laundering, data protection and privacy, sanctions, and cybersecurity matters. It also has a strong corporate investigation offering, with the team drawing on international expertise to advise on multi-jurisdictional investigations. Hong Kong-based Kyle Wombolt heads the team, who is well regarded for his expertise in white collar defence, corporate investigations, and criminal and regulatory enforcement proceedings. Other key practitioners include Pamela Kiesselbach, who specialises in local and international anti-bribery and anti-money laundering laws, and Jeremy Birch, who is active in government and internal investigations. Nanda Lau provides on the ground expertise from Shanghai, and has significant experience in regulatory and corporate matters.

Practice head(s):

Kyle Wombolt

Other key lawyers:

Pamela Kiesselbach; Jeremy Birch; Nanda Lau; Tracey Cui


‘HSF’s regulatory and compliance team led by Kyle Wombolt is top-notch and unrivalled in Asia Pacific. What makes HSF stand out is the team’s depth of knowledge, skill and experience.’

‘Pamela Kiesselbach is extremely good at what she does and is a huge asset for the team.’ 

‘Jeremy Birch is very dedicated to clients and brings a great work ethic and talent to the team.’

‘Very strong, hands-on experience, alert to all the possible pitfalls and able to work very effectively at all levels, from local staff up to the board. Very focused on how to manage the situation for the best outcome, rather than just the legal technicalities.’

‘Kyle is extremely experienced and very hands-on, has a lot of practical insight into what you need to worry about from both a legal and a practical perspective, and works very well with senior management and the board.’

‘Tracey Cui was very alert to emerging problems in the situation, and gained witnesses’ trust very quickly.’

‘The team has broad experience in dealing with all the key financial regulators in Hong Kong, including the SFC and HKMA. They have a strong focus on investigations conducted by the regulators, and contentious regulatory matters. Another strength of this firm is their ability to draw on their litigation, arbitration and employment teams.’

‘Kyle Wombolt and Jeremy Birch are the key individuals to note. They have in-depth knowledge of how financial regulators work, their concerns and how to handle investigations. Kyle has a great sense of how to manage complex situations and competing priorities.’

Kirkland & Ellis International LLP

Kirkland & Ellis International LLP offers a strong regulatory and compliance practice, with the team handling a range of government and corporate investigations, anti-corruption matters, enforcement actions, civil litigation, and related compliance advice, acting primarily for MNCs, private equity companies, and financial institutions. It also has strong international capabilities, with the team regularly acting on multi-jurisdictional cases both across Asia and further afield, including in the UK and US. Cori Lable and Tiana Zhang co-lead the team from Hong Kong and Shanghai, respectively. Lable specialises in anti-corruption, anti-money laundering, sanctions compliance, and securities laws mandates, whilst Zhang is recognised as a go-to partner for US-China cross-border crisis management matters, including on financial fraud investigations. Jodi Wu and Shanghai-based Yue Qiu are noted for their expertise in government enforcement and internal investigation matters.

Practice head(s):

Cori Lable; Tiana Zhang

Other key lawyers:

Jodi Wu; Yue Qiu


‘Tiana Zhang is strong, dynamic, and a brilliant leader.’

‘Yue Qiu is a talented writer, and dedicated to her clients.’

‘Jodi Wu is committed to getting the job done at all costs.’

Paul Hastings LLP

The corporate investigations and anti-corruption practice at Paul Hastings LLP has seen continued growth in recent years, with the team acting for a number of high-profile clients in a range of matters. It is particularly well-regarded for its expertise in acting on compliance reviews and internal investigations for life sciences, technology, and private equity clients seeking to enter the Chinese market. It also regularly advises on cross-border matters for stakeholders in the US, Europe, and China. Practice head Shaun Wu splits his time between Hong Kong and Shanghai, and has extensive expertise in FCPA, UK Bribery Act, corruption, bribery, fraud, and misconduct mandates. Shanghai-based Phoebe Yan joined the firm in 2021 from Hogan Lovells International LLP and has significant experience advising clients in the life sciences sector, whilst Sophie Han focuses on corporate compliance matters relating to the US.

Practice head(s):

Shaun Wu

Other key lawyers:

Phoebe Yan; Sophie Han


‘The team is very professional and dedicated.’

‘Professional, easy-going, working in a well organized way.’

‘Their team is one of the most dedicated teams that I have worked with. They have a deep devotion to the work, and their expertise is clear.’

‘Their team is very professional, with  standardized approaches to achieve the best possible results.’

Key clients


Goldman Sachs

Airbus S.E.

Braskem S.A.

Work highlights

  • Acting for one of the largest and most prominent US-listed Chinese technology conglomerates’ independent audit committee of its board of directors in a high-profile bet-the-company investigation into allegations of misconduct and financial irregularities.
  • Advising and acting for one of the world’s largest technology companies in internal reviews of its transactions and business dealings across China, in connection with sanctions, trade controls and ESG corporate compliance issues.
  • Appointed as the Independent Compliance Monitor to an Asian company in connection with its sanction by the Asian Development Bank for integrity violations.

White & Case LLP

White & Case LLP has a dedicated regulatory compliance team, offering comprehensive advice on regulatory and criminal enforcement matters, as well as investigations and related civil claims. It primarily acts for multinational clients with operations in China, as well as for Chinese clients with operations abroad. The team also has strong capabilities in acting on cross-border parallel investigation proceedings. Bingna Guo leads the group from Beijing and has extensive experience in cross-border and domestic internal investigations and compliance matters, with particular expertise on US-related mandates, and is regularly involved in anti-corruption, fraud, embezzlement, and conflicts of interest investigations. Also notable is Hong Kong-based James Hsiao who focuses on international anti-corruption investigations, regulatory and compliance matters, and cross-border dispute resolution.

Practice head(s):

Bingna Guo

Other key lawyers:

James Hsiao

Key clients

Goldman Sachs Asset Management

Goldman Sachs (Asia)

Jio Platforms Limited

Shenzhen Mindray Bio-Medical Electronics

Work highlights

  • Advised the private equity and wealth management arms of Goldman Sachs in multiple compliance matters related to investments in Chinese targets involving highly complex new technologies, including an investment in the Series D-2 round financing and compliance due diligence of InferVision.
  • Advising Shenzhen Mindray Bio-Medical Electronics on the global assessment and update of its compliance and internal controls.
  • Advised India-based Jio Platforms Limited on its US$200 million investment to acquire a 17.24% stake in Glance InMobi Pte. Ltd., which included conducting FCPA due diligence and assisting with probing for compliance weaknesses of the targets.

DLA Piper

DLA Piper has a dedicated regulatory and investigations team, focusing primarily on compliance reviews, regulatory advice, and internal and regulatory investigations for both international and China-based MNCs. Due to the firm’s wide global network, it also has a strong focus on cross-border mandates. Whilst it has a busy practice handling traditional white-collar crime, internal fraud, anti-bribery, and anti-corruption investigations, it also has a growing practice in relation to cybercrime-related reviews and investigations in recent years. The team is co-led by Sammy Fang and Nathan Bush from Hong Kong and Singapore, respectively. Also notable is Christine Liu whose practice focuses on corporate investigations and compliance.

Practice head(s):

Sammy Fang; Nathan Bush

Other key lawyers:

Christine Liu


‘The litigation and regulatory team of DLA Piper is a fully-integrated team that can tap on Global network as well as local solutions.’

‘Sammy Fang’s team helped us handle our company’s internal investigation cases. The team is quite professional and experienced in handling compliance cases.’

‘Sammy Fang has tremendous experience navigating complex regulatory and compliance environment between China and the US.’

Latham & Watkins LLP

Latham & Watkins LLP advises MNCs and financial institutions on a range matters, with the team regularly conducting internal investigations and risk assessments for clients related to the FCPA, Chinese commercial bribery laws, as well as other anti-bribery regulations. It is also particularly adept at advising US-listed companies operating in China. It has strong on the ground expertise, with practice head Hui Xu splitting his time between Beijing and Shanghai. Xu has rich experience handling multi-jurisdictional investigations involving FCPA and Chinese bribery laws. Meanwhile, senior associate Sean Wu is experienced in a range of regulatory and compliance mandates, including government investigations, internal investigations, and compliance programs.

Practice head(s):

Hui Xu

Other key lawyers:

Sean Wu

Key clients

Sinovac Biotech Ltd.

HollySys Automation Technologies

Morgan, Lewis & Bockius LLP

The regulatory and compliance offering at Morgan Lewis & Bockius LLP handles a broad array of anti-corruption and regulatory compliance mandates, including conducting investigations of alleged employee and third-party malfeasance after the fact. The leadership teams consists of Lesli Ligorner and Todd Liao in Shanghai, alongside Charles Mo in Hong Kong. Ligorner has extensive experience in corporate investigations, FCPA and local anti-corruption compliance, and discrimination policies, which is closely tied to her employment practice. Liao is particularly adept at advising clients on anti-corruption matters and cross-border corporate transactions, whilst Mo has significant expertise in securities and white collar crime mandates.

Practice head(s):

Lesli Ligorner; Todd Liao; Charles Mo


‘Lesli Ligorner is an exceptional attorney, who is my go-to for any matters in China.’

Norton Rose Fulbright

Based out of Shanghai, Norton Rose Fulbright offers a solid regulatory and compliance practice with on the ground expertise. It handles a variety of matters, ranging from internal investigations and compliance advice to anti-corruption due diligence and audits. It also has cross-border capabilities, advising on domestic issues as well as foreign laws and regulations applicable to operations in China. Hong Sun heads the team, with significant experience advising banking clients on regulatory risks, as well as in corporate regulatory and compliance investigation matters. Ai Tong is also notable for her expertise in handling transactions and regulatory matters involving foreign investments in China by foreign financial institutions.

Practice head(s):

Hong Sun

Other key lawyers:

Ai Tong

Work highlights

  • Advised the China subsidiary of a leading international travel service provider on its proposed business arrangements in connection with its collaboration with payment institutions and other travel agents in China, involving feasibility analysis, cross-border data transfer issue and telecom license issue.
  • Advised a global investment firm on the PRC legal regime on anti-money laundering that applies to Qualified Domestic Limited Partners in China.
  • Advised a world leading trading house on the legal regime in China applicable to the national carbon emission trading platform hosted at Shanghai Environment Energy Exchange and its differences with the local trading platforms.

Pinsent Masons

Pinsent Masons’ white-collar crime, investigation, and compliance team handles a variety of mandates for Chinese clients, including internal investigations, multilateral bank sanctions, integrity compliance policies and procedures, and import and export controls and sanctions. It primarily advises Chinese SOEs, and with the firm’s wider expertise in construction mandates, the team also offers strong expertise in cross-border compliance and investigation-related work in the construction and infrastructure sectors. Feifei Zheng co-leads the practice from Beijing, offering on-the-ground expertise, alongside London-based Neil McInnes. Zheng acts for a number of Chinese and international contractors and specialises in integrity compliance risk management and multilateral development bank debarment.

Practice head(s):

Feifei Zheng; Neil McInnes

Ropes & Gray LLP

The anti-corruption and international risk department at Ropes & Gray LLP acts for a number of corporations and global investors across a wide range of industries, including technology, real estate, retail, and private equity, though it is particularly notable for its expertise in the healthcare and life sciences sector. Practice head Andrew Dale is based in Hong Kong, and has extensive experience representing global and US-based corporations in corporate investigations. Geoffrey Atkins has a broad practice, specialising in civil and criminal anti-corruption and securities mandates, as well as internal investigations and compliance and regulatory matters. David Chen and Tina Yu lend on the ground support from Shanghai, focusing on governmental and internal investigations and cross-border anti-corruption matters, respectively.

Practice head(s):

Andrew Dale

Other key lawyers:

Geoffrey Atkins; David Chen; Tina Yu

Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP

Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP’s cross-border investigations practice has a particular strength in acting for Chinese companies in US-regulator inquiries and investigations, as well as acting on enforcement matters for US-listed Chinese companies. Steve Kwok, based in Hong Kong, leads the group, with extensive experience representing corporations, financial institutions and individuals in US regulatory enforcement mandates and internal investigations. Bradley Klein, based in Washington DC, has broad expertise acting for Asia and US clients across a range of industries in internal investigations. Associate Beatriz Paterno is also noted for her experience on corporate internal investigations and government enforcement matters.

Practice head(s):

Steve Kwok

Other key lawyers:

Bradley Klein; Beatriz Paterno


‘This regulatory compliance practice is extremely supportive of their firm’s capital markets and corporate clients — because of the built-in relationships the firm has, the team is highly trusted and valued by their clients for regulatory compliance work, especially with a US-facing dimension.’

‘The team is highly integrated into the firm’s global practice and works well with various counsel at other law firms.’

‘Steve Kwok is very knowledgeable and approachable, sensible and collaborative, and above all has experience dealing with government investigations.’


Ashurst’s global market department handles a range of domestic and international regulatory matters, with particular expertise in the financial services sector. It advises a number of financial institutions, as well as inter-dealer brokers, securities houses, and asset management companies. Practice head Patrick Phua splits his time between Beijing and Hong Kong. Other notable practitioners include Priscilla Chen, who is additionally qualified in the PRC bar, as well as Yolanda Liu and Tracy Wang, who offer on-the-ground support from Shanghai and Beijing, respectively.

Practice head(s):

Patrick Phua

Other key lawyers:

Priscilla Chen; Yolanda Liu; Tracy Wang


‘Ashurst is commercially aware and provide practical solutions that have made transactions in China easier. Clients trust their advice and they always deliver.’

‘Tracy Wang has been incredible at providing commercial and considered advice. She is also very personable, easy to work with, responsive and knowledgeable.’

‘The Ashurst team is well balanced, with technically proficient practitioners led by a business savvy managing partner. We can expect legal advice from the team to be practical and actionable, cutting through the complex legal landscape in China and focusing on what matters.’

‘Tracy Wang is a responsive all-rounder. I appreciate her attention to our requests and high quality of work across various regulatory topics.’

‘Patrick Phua lends a sense of calm in a crisis, and commands attention amongst C-suite executives with his steady demeanour, familiarity with the Chinese market and strong communication skills.’

Key clients

China Development Bank

Bank of China

Industrial and Commercial Bank of China

China Construction Bank

Export-Import Bank of China

Deutsche Bank

China Export & Credit Insurance Corporation

Agricultural Bank of China

China Minsheng Bank

Australia and New Zealand Banking Group

CMB International Finance

BOCOM International Asset Management

China Everbright Finance

CMBC Capital Finance Limited

Tai Fung Bank Limited

S&P Ratings (China) Co., Ltd

CME Group

S&P Global

BGC Partners

Genesys Cloud Services B.V.

Work highlights

  • Advised  CME Group exchange in setting up several regulated representative offices of DCMs in Beijing, China.


The compliance practice group at CMS has expertise across a number of sectors, including in the pharmaceutical and biotech, technology, energy, and logistics. It has rich experience in corporate compliance matters and risk management, with the team handling a wide range of matters, including compliance audits, risk assessments, internal investigations, whistle-blower management and corporate governance. Philipp Senff heads the team from Shanghai, with expertise in advising on compliance and risk management matters in conjunction with China’s corporate social credit system.

Practice head(s):

Philipp Senff

Other key lawyers:

Jeanette Yu

Hogan Lovells International LLP

Hogan Lovells International LLP has a solid regulatory and compliance offering, with the team advising on a range of matters, including responding to whistle-blower actions, risk exposure to regulators, and corporate investigations. Calvin Ding leads the group from Shanghai, with expertise representing companies in corruption and conflicts of interest, trade compliance, and cybersecurity incident related matters across a wide array of industries.

Practice head(s):

Calvin Ding

Other key lawyers:

Roy Zou

Key clients

ZTE Corporation


Linklaters‘ financial regulation group comprises specialism from its non-contentious financial and contentious regulatory practice in order to advise on a full range of regulatory matters for its clients, ranging from the establishment, licencing and compliance policies to investigations and dispute resolution.  Its clients consist of regional and global financial institutions, investment and commercial banks, insurance companies, and funds. The group is led by Sumit Indwar and Carl Fernandes from Hong Kong, with Indwar providing specific expertise in the fintech area in recent years.

Practice head(s):

Sumit Indwar; Carl Fernandes

Morrison Foerster

Morrison Foerster offers an integrated contentious and non-contentious corporate investigation and anti-corruption practice, with the team advising on a wide range of investigations and regulatory compliance issues, including US economic sanctions, anti-money laundering, securities fraud, and corporate compliance matters. It also has a particular strength for privacy and data matters, as well as in US-China cross-border work. Timothy Blakely leads the group from Hong Kong and is supported by B. Chen Zhu, who specialises in cross-border government enforcement matters, internal corporate investigations, and economic sanctions.

Practice head(s):

Timothy Blakely

Other key lawyers:

B. Chen Zhu


‘The team is based in Shanghai and Hong Kong, and it is good with corporate internal investigations.’

‘B. Chen Zhu is a rising partner in conducting internal investigations for pharm companies. Very bright, prompt, respectful, and practical findings.’

Sidley Austin LLP

Sidley Austin LLP’s corporate investigations team advises clients on a range of matters, with the team collectively adding strength in different specialisms. The group is led by Lei Li from Beijing, who has significant expertise in handling local and national investigations conducted by Chinese government agencies, as well as in general internal investigation matters. Meanwhile, Linh Lieu provides specific expertise in securities regulation matters, white-collar investigations, compliance, and corporate risk management.

Practice head(s):

Lei Li

Other key lawyers:

Linh Lieu