OVERVIEW & EXPERTISE

 

Southeast Asia is a dynamic and remarkably diverse region, experiencing extraordinary growth and presenting exceptional investment opportunities. In recent years, Canada has increased its ties to this region, particularly in Singapore, Thailand, Vietnam, Indonesia and the Philippines. The 10-country grouping of ASEAN (Brunei, Burma, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam), with a population of more than 600 million people, is on its way to forming an integrated market and production base by 2015. As a group, these nations represent Canada’s seventh-largest trading partner. Reaching C$6.7-billion at year-end 2012, Canadian foreign investment in this region has surpassed our combined investments in China and India.

Blakes represents companies from the region in their Canadian transactions, optimizing their business opportunities and limiting their risk exposure. Many Southeast Asian companies know that they can rely on our lawyers for strategic business advice and guidance through Canada’s legislative and regulatory framework, including foreign investment regulations and disclosure requirements. Companies from the region engage Blakes for our unrivalled expertise in mergers and acquisitions, corporate finance, banking, competition, antitrust and foreign investment, taxation, and real estate matters. They also rely on our leading industry practices, including energy, natural resources and mining, oil and gas, environmental, financial services, infrastructure, manufacturing, and technology, for strategic advice.

Working closely with lawyers at preeminent Asian law firms, we also assist our Canadian and international clients with their business relationships and investments in Southeast Asia. Many Canadian companies have been operating in the region for more than 20 years, in manufacturing, oil and gas, technology, mining and agricultural industries, and significant growth opportunities continue to exist. As the Canadian liquefied natural gas industry develops, for example, Singapore represents a significant import hub for the Asian market.

Select Representative Matters

Singapore:

  • Providing ongoing defence of cross-jurisdictional claims involving China, Singapore and Canada involving allegations of passing off and copying of industrial design.
  • Advised on a credit agreement between Canadian Solar Solutions Inc., as borrower, and Credit Suisse AG, Singapore Branch as lender and assisted on the environmental aspects of this matter.
  • Provided advice to a leading corporation in the petroleum industry concerning export control and customs compliance issues involving the export of crude oil from Canada to Singapore.
  • Acted for Global Crossing Limited and its worldwide subsidiaries on its debt restructuring by way of sale of its notes to Singapore Technologies Telemedia, for the amount of US$200-million.
Philippines:
  • Advice on Canadian regulatory and commercial issues in relation to distribution of the GMA TV (Philippines) and GMA Life Channels (Philippines), including renewal of deals with Bell, Rogers, Shaw and MTS Allstream.
  • Provided general regulatory and commercial advice for negotiation of new deals with Bell and other Canadian affiliates for Kapatid TV5 (Philippines) and Aksyon TV International channels. Advised on affiliation with GlobeCast (a subsidiary of France Telecom) for Internet protocol television distribution in Canada.
  • Drafted a new mutual fund statute for the Philippines and the implementing rules and forms.
  • Advised World Bank in developing and implementing template procurement and contract documents relating to the design-build-operation of solid-waste facilities. Blakes advised the World Bank and a local government in the Philippines in connection with the first "live" implementation of the template bidding and contract documents. We also advised the World Bank on the refinement of the template documents for future use in solid waste projects funded by the World Bank.
  • Advised CGA Mining Limited on its Toronto Stock Exchange listing, its acquisition of the Masbate gold project in the Philippines and subsequent C$170-million private offerings.
  • Advised Ratel Gold Limited on its C$14-million initial public offering and proposed acquisition of the interest held by Russell Mining & Minerals, Inc. in the King-king project in the Philippines.
Thailand:
  • Advised Thailand's PTT Exploration and Production Company on its US$2.28-billion acquisition of a 40 per cent partnership interest in Statoil Canada Partnership, whose main asset is the Kai Kos Dehseh oil sands project in Alberta, and the subsequent negotiation of a joint venture agreement with Statoil Canada Ltd.
  • Representing the underwriters in connection with the secondary offering of common shares of Coastal Energy Company, an exploration and production company with its principal assets located offshore Thailand.
  • Advised TDK Corporation of Japan on its acquisition of the Lambda power division of Invensys PLC. The transaction included U.S. operations, European operations, and a 58.2 per cent interest in Densei-Lambda KK, with operations in Japan, Israel, China, Malaysia, Singapore and Thailand.
Indonesia:
  • Acted as project counsel for Husky Energy Inc. and Petro-Canada relating to all aspects of the development of the White Rose project. Also acted as counsel to Husky with respect to development of the Terra Nova project and on Husky's disposition of 50 per cent interest to CNOOC and joint venture agreement for exploration and development of Indonesia Madura fields.
  • Advised on the US$125-million disposition of 50 per cent interest to CNOOC and operational operating agreements for exploration and development of Indonesia Madura fields 
Vietnam:
  • Acting for technology and clean technology companies on cross-border commercial agreements, including licensing distribution and outsourcing for numerous countries, including Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines, Singapore, Taiwan, Thailand and Vietnam.
Malaysia:
  • Assisted a Canadian public company in forming a joint venture with the national oil companies of China, Malaysia and Sudan for the exploration, production, transmission and sale of crude oil in Africa.
Cambodia:
  • Acting on a mixed-use development of a 45,000 square feet vacant site in downtown Montréal with investors from Quebec, Cambodia and China.
Myanmar (Burma)
  • :Provided advice to a global investment banking and securities firm on the application of Burma Sanctions in relation to investment in securities of private equity funds.
  • Provided advice to a leading private equity firm specializing in the energy industry on Canadian sanctions applicable to investments in Burma respecting its US$3.7-billion acquisition of a supplier of helicopter transportation services around the world, including its Burmese-based assets.
 
 

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