International law firms head to Myanmar

July 24, 2013 International law firms are flocking to Myanmar, following significant new investment in the country.

Since the military junta lost power in 2011, Myanmar has become an attractive destination for international investment, as companies vie for roles in building the country’s key infrastructure projects - railways, roads, power, telecommunications, oil refineries and so on. And lawyers are following their potential clients into the country.

Baker & McKenzie launched a Myanmar practice in its Thai office in April 2012, appointing its first Myanmar-qualified attorney, Saw Yu Win, four months later.

“Since its establishment we’ve received an overwhelming number of enquiries from global clients,” said Clive Cook, co-head of Bakers’ Myanmar center. “Most clients are still at the stage of doing research, assessing risks, understanding the environment and trying to make decisions but recently a number of enquiries have come to fruition. The transactions generated are mostly in the oil and gas and telecom sectors.”

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