Chicago-based global law firm Baker & McKenzie has opened a new office in Myanmar in a bid to tap the flocking foreign investors looking to invest in the “frontier market”, the firm announced.
The opening of the new office in the Southeast Asian nation’s commercial hub Yangon “reflects the business community’s growing interest in Myanmar and the firm’s commitment to help its clients seize opportunities in new markets,” it said in a statement.
“Clients are increasingly looking to Myanmar and Southeast Asia for growth opportunities, particularly as the ASEAN nations work collaboratively towards achieving the ASEAN Economic Community by 2015,” said Eduardo Leite, Baker & McKenzie Chairman of the Executive Committee.
“We are delighted to extend our service to clients with an on-the-ground presence in Myanmar and look forward to helping clients grow their businesses in Myanmar’s increasingly globally integrated economy.”
The Yangon office will help companies particularly in the sectors of energy, mining and infrastructure; information technology and telecommunications; consumer goods, corporate transactions and IP, the firm said.
The announcement was made as more than 300 of the firm’s Asia Pacific partners met at the annual Asia Pacific Meeting held in Tokyo. The new office will be the firm’s 16th in Asia Pacific, while it has 75 offices worldwide across 47 jurisdictions.
The Yangon office will be led by Chris Hughes, an infrastructure and corporate lawyer from the firm’s Sydney office.
“Entering new markets, especially frontier, high-growth markets, is challenging,” said Chris Hughes, Managing Partner of the Myanmar office.
“We have six decades of experience advising companies doing responsible business in emerging markets. With our local knowledge and global experience and resources, we are well placed to serve the expanded base of international and Asian companies that are eager to invest in Myanmar."
Chirs said the firm is here in Myanmar “for the long haul” and looks forward to “working with Myanmar institutions, officials and regulators to lend our support to the country’s transition.”
This will be Baker & McKenzie’s sixth office opening in two years, following the launch of its offices in South Korea, Dubai, Peru, Morocco and South Africa.
Baker & McKenzie’s global revenues for the fiscal year ended June 30, 2013, were $2.419 billion.