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How to manage risks when entering, operating and growing your business in Greater China was the topic covered by our two expert presenters at Corrs Chambers Westgarth on Wednesday 27 July. Visiting Melbourne from New York, Mr Steven Fox, CEO of Veracity Worldwide and Ms Annette Hughes, Partner at Corrs Chambers Westgarth Melbourne provided a great deal of insight into what businesses need to be aware of when working in the Chinese market.
Steven began by pointing to the often unrealistic stereotypes about doing business in China, such as that it is too difficult, challenging and corrupt. However, Steven emphasised that this was not the case and that many of the challenges present were no different to operating in other developing markets. While a range of problems can present themselves, a focus on the opportunities and how to mitigate any risks will allow businesses to reap rewards. In saying this, Steven highlighted the virtues of an ‘eyes wide open’ approach and making sure that businesses are asking the right questions. Understanding how different rules are perceived and applied in different contexts is vital in order to avoid potential land mines. Further, accessing good information about partners and being aware of your operating environment is also very important. Steven concluded by stressing the importance of due diligence and comprehending what can be knowable in order to avoid problems in the first instance.
Annette’s presentation provided a detailed legal perspective which emphasised how to avoid risks associated with corruption when doing business with China. Some of the topics covered by Annette included the potential snowballing costs related to multi-jurisdictional anti-corruption investigations, the increasingly long arm reach of anti-corruption statutes and the importance of establishing a proper corporate culture which requires compliance. Annette also highlighted the 6 core risk management principles which feature monitoring and reviewing, top level commitment, proportionate procedure, risk assessment, due diligence and screening, as well as culture, communication and training.
The presentations were followed by an engaging Q&A session and further networking opportunities.
We warmly thank our speakers for their time and expertise and extend our thanks to our Vice President Mr Liming Huang and Corrs Chambers Westgarth for generously hosting the event.