find the latest legal job
Corporate Counsel and Company Secretary
Category: Generalists - In House | Location: Newcastle, Maitland & Hunter NSW
· Highly-respected, innovative and entrepreneurial Not-for-Profit · Competency based Board
View details
Chief Counsel and Company Secretary
Category: Generalists - In House | Location: Newcastle, Maitland & Hunter NSW
· Dynamic, high growth organisation · ASX listed market leader
View details
In-house Projects Lawyer | Renewables / Solar | 2-5 Years PQE
Category: Generalists - In House | Location: All Australia
· Help design the future · NASDAQ Listed
View details
Insurance Lawyer (3-5 PAE)
Category: Insurance and Superannuation Law | Location: Brisbane CBD & Inner Suburbs Brisbane QLD
· Dynamic organisation ·
View details
Legal Counsel
Category: Corporate and Commercial Law | Location: North Sydney NSW 2060
· 18 month fixed term contract · 3-5 years PQE with TMT exposure
View details
Tokyo new target for Aus firms

Tokyo new target for Aus firms

Japan's renewed interest in Australia as an investment opportunity is driving Australian law firms to open up offices in the city.

JAPAN'S renewed interest in Australia as an investment opportunity is driving Australian law firms to open up offices in the city of savvy clients and sushi. 

Law firm Blake Dawson announced today it would become the first Australian law firm to open an office in Tokyo, a move it hopes will strengthen its presence across Asia. 

Deacons, meanwhile, will have a Tokyo presence when it merges with international firm Norton Rose in January next year. The firm says its clients are "very very positive" about the prospect of a Tokyo base for the lawyers and partners it currently uses with Deacons. 

Blake Dawson said the new office, which is expected to open its doors in early 2010, will enable the firm to have close contact with some of its current clients and Japan's leading trading houses, financial institutions, energy and resources, infrastructure and consumer products companies. 

The firm's north Asia group head, Ian Williams, said: "Blake Dawson has led the way in acting for Japanese client in Australia, Indonesia and PNG over the last 15 years."

Blakes' new Tokyo office will be headed by Natsuko Ogawa, who has been appointed an international partner in the firm's Asia practice. Natsuko acts for a broad cross section of Japanese clients in M&A, joint ventures, energy and resources projects. 

Deacons partner Adrian Ahern, who recently spoke on a panel at the Lowy Institute on Japanese investment in Australia, says the country is still Australia's largest trading partner. Investment in the past 18 months has taken off, he said, and so Tokyo is a sensible option for a firm to place its lawyers. 

"In the last couple of decades a lot of Japanese investment has been focused on the mining, oil and gas sector generally. But in the last 18 months, large Japanese trading houses that have been here for a long time have been investing in sectors where they haven't otherwise invested," Ahern said. 

He said the firm had seen a major Japanese trading house being a participant in the successful consortium of building the Melbourne desalination plant. It has also seen some of the companies that usually invest in "straight up and down mining and gas now investing in mining oil and gas ventures that are outside the ordinary. Maybe there is some innovative technology involved", he said.  

Ahern said that in the past year there has been significant investment in the food and beverage sector, most notably Kirin buying Tooheys, and Asahi buying the local assets of Cadbury Schwepps.  

Like this story? Read more:

QLS condemns actions of disgraced lawyer as ‘stain on the profession’

NSW proposes big justice reforms to target risk of reoffending

The legal budget breakdown 2017

Tokyo new target for Aus firms
lawyersweekly logo
Promoted content
Recommended by Spike Native Network
more from lawyers weekly
LCA president Fiona McLeod SC
Aug 17 2017
Where social fault lines meet the justice gap in Aus
After just returning from a tour of the Northern Territory, LCA president Fiona McLeod SC speaks wit...
Marriage equality flag
Aug 17 2017
ALHR backs High Court challenge to marriage equality postal vote
Australian Lawyers for Human Rights (ALHR) has voiced its support for a constitutional challenge to ...
Give advice
Aug 17 2017
A-G issues advice on judiciary’s public presence
Commonwealth Attorney-General George Brandis QC has offered his advice on the public presence of jud...
Allens managing partner Richard Spurio, image courtesy Allens' website
Jun 21 2017
Promo season at Allens
A group of lawyers at Allens have received promotions across its PNG and Australian offices. ...
May 11 2017
Partner exits for in-house role
A Victorian lawyer has left the partnership of a national firm to start a new gig with state governm...
Esteban Gomez
May 11 2017
National firm recruits ‘major asset’
A national law firm has announced it has appointed a new corporate partner who brings over 15 years'...
Nicole Rich
May 16 2017
Access to justice for young transgender Australians
Reform is looming for the process that young transgender Australians and their families must current...
Geoff Roberson
May 11 2017
The lighter side of the law: when law and comedy collide
On the face of it, there doesn’t seem to be much that is amusing about the law, writes Geoff Rober...
May 10 2017
Advocate’s immunity – without fear or without favour but not both
On 29 March 2017, the High Court handed down its decision in David Kendirjian v Eugene Lepore & ...