A hard battle

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At the time of writing, many countries around the world are entering into lockdown mode. The number of confirmed COVID-19 cases have risen as the pandemic spreads, and stock market indices around the world have spiralled downwards as panic grows.

The epidemic has forced the central government to issue numerous regulations that aim to shield the workforce from bearing the costs of the disruption and stabilize the employment relationship. The regulations, at both national and local levels, seek to address employment issues

While there is no one-size-fits-all approach to handling the myriad employment issues raised by the COVID-19 crisis, employers need to review the different situations carefully.

Our cover story, Remote controls, summarizes the significant regulations related to these employment issues and provides insight for companies in China to resolve these issues during this challenging time.

Law firms are also adapting themselves in this fast-changing environment, but some of them have also made great achievements in the past year. This issue features our annual China Business Law Awards, given to both Chinese and foreign law firms that showcased the strongest performances in 2019. The past year was a flourishing one for China’s legal market, where law firms, regardless of their size, strived to fit corporate counsel demands for quality services.

To reflect the market situation, we made several additions to the award categories this year, among which is the “Golden League” award, which comprises eight elite full-service Chinese law firms with all-round capabilities and nationwide reach.

We also extended the regional awards to include the Greater Bay Area, Ningbo, Tianjin and northeastern China, as we observed that some leading regional law firms have started participating in the national legal market with regional resources at hand.

China Business Law Journal relies on thousands of nominations and comments, from corporate counsel and leading lawyers in the market, while other significant elements such as the law firms’ landmark deals or cases, and internal development, were also considered. We extend our sincere congratulations to all the winners!

Through China’s continual reform and opening up, industry upgrades are bringing with them a steep learning curve for corporate counsel. In Three big views, three general counsel who stand on the legal frontiers of their industries share their observations and experiences.

After months of lockdown and prevention measures in China, the daily number of newly reported cases has dropped, and companies in the country are moving back into business, with the resumption rate in some regions reported to have exceeded 80%. While it remains uncertain how long this global pandemic will last, the situation in China is indicating to all that the virus is conquerable.