Commercial Law in the People's Republic of China will bring students up close to the past decade of foreign direct investment in China.
Having lived in China before attending Georgetown University, and having worked in Shanghai since graduation from University of Virginia School of Law, Nestor Gounaris has seen China’s economic transformation from the late 80s. Using his experience in hundreds of diverse foreign direct investment projects (ranging from US$125 million shipyard developments to minor trade disputes), Mr. Gounaris will present a variety of interactive modules that will allow students to:
(i) develop a basic understanding of recent Chinese history (i.e., from the fall of the
Qing Dynasty and rise of the Republic to Deng Xiao Ping's economic reforms) to better understand the historical and political context from which China’s economic phenomenon is taking place;
(ii) develop a fundamental understanding of the various legal structures foreign investors rely on and key issues to consider when to investing directly into China by exploring common and critical errors made by foreign investors;
(iii) focus on the joint venture structure, analyzing and deconstructing joint venture law, implementing regulations and a model joint venture contract;
(iv) explore negotiating norms of both Chinese and U.S. commercial decision makers;
(v) understand Chinese employment law, including recent developments (and how these developments reflect the intersection of law and economic history), concluding with practical and legal implications for foreign direct investment projects;
(vi) explore trademark registration and trademark licensing, focusing on the complex nature and style of bureaucracy in China and further explore a case study of the Wahaha/Danone joint venture dispute highlighting the limitations of relying solely on legal analysis of risk; and
(vii) end with a joint venture negotiating exercise that will allow the students to bring together all that was explored in the above modules through an interactive process.