Exchange Programme with Guangdong Lawyers Association
In 2017, the Law Society of Singapore (LSS) signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with Guangdong Lawyers Association (GLA) with the aim of strengthening ties, promoting exchange as well as collaborating in mutually beneficial activities. In recent years, Guangzhou (in the Greater Bay Area) has experienced accelerating growth in trade and economic activities. Guangzhou is also actively involved in the Belt and Road initiative and has been enhancing its maritime infrastructure.
An exchange programme was organised between LSS and GLA for 20 lawyers in the Guangdong region to be attached to Singapore law firms for a two-week period to understand Singapore’s law practices and legal system. The programme was held from 11 March to 24 March 2019. The aim was to facilitate exchange of knowledge and networking opportunities between Singapore and Guangdong lawyers. Likewise, reciprocal arrangements will be made for Singapore lawyers to be attached to law firms in Guangdong in 3rd to 4th quarter of 2019. The application for Singapore lawyers to indicate interest to participate in the exchange programme in Guangdong is currently underway at the time of writing this report.
The exchange programme started with a welcome orientation by Council Member of LSS, Felicia Tan who gave a briefing in Mandarin on the Singapore legal system followed by an overview of the roles and functions of LSS by Director of Continuing Professional Development, Jean Wong. This was followed by an informal networking lunch at LSS for host mentors and Guangdong lawyers.
The delegation was also brought around Singapore to visit popular attractions. Members of our ExCo hosted the Guangdong lawyers to a welcome dinner at Peach Garden, overlooking the beautiful Singapore Central Business District evening skyline.
The second day of the exchange programme included visits to the following places with a quick pit-stop for lunch at LSS.
- Singapore International Commercial Court
- State Courts of Singapore
- Singapore International Arbitration Centre
- Singapore International Mediation Centre
The secondment to Singapore law firms officially commenced on 13 March to 24 March 2019.
Council members together with a few participants for Mission to Guangzhou hosted the Guangdong lawyers to a closing dinner to conclude the exchange programme on a sumptuous note! President of LSS Gregory Vijayendran, SC, in his closing speech mentioned that the exchange programme was an extraordinary pilot initiative and strongly believed that it would help Singapore lawyers understand China better.
The leader of the Guangdong lawyers’ delegation, Shan Tao said the exchange programme was a new start for the exchange of knowledge and an educational journey for both lawyers in Singapore and China. He also expressed his appreciation to LSS.