September 2009

China cracks down on drunk driving and you might do jail time...even if you are a foreigner

China drunk driving.jpgThe foreign community should take a moment and learn a bit about the new drinking and driving enforcement policies here in Shenzhen and nationwide.

Recently the local authorities in Shenzhen have stepped up controls and if drivers are caught with a blood alcohol exceeding the 0.08% limit, they risk jail sentences and fines.

Under these new policies, which have been enforced strictly in the past weeks, driving under the influence of alcohol can result in a 15 day detention as well as a driver's education program and fines.  That means jail, folks.  Chinese jail.

China drunk driving.jpg

China drunk driving.jpg

Arbitration is better than a Chinese Court; China International Economic and Trade Arbitration Commission (“CIETAC”)

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When signing a contract with a Chinese supplier or a buyer or a seller – or virtually any kind of contract that you can think of where at least one side of it touches China – what happens if something goes wrong? Well, one way to ensure that you have a chance of knowing the answer to that question is to insert an arbitration clause about how to solve any dispute in the future should one arise.

For many years, we have recommended that our clients choose the China International Economic and Trade Arbitration Commission (“CIETAC”) instead of People’s Court. Arbitration has long been a favored means of resolving commercial disputes here, with CIETAC being here since 1956.   Compared with other methods of dispute resolution, arbitration has the following advantages:

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cietac banner.jpg

CPA Guide to how things really work in China

To all those CPA's out there that are looking for a Tax Analects front book jacket 24 December 2008.jpggood source of information on how things really work on the street in China, you should find a copy of this new book by a gentleman named Larry Lipsher.  A website has been established at www.lifeilao.com where you can order one.  There are also copies available in many locations in Hong Kong.

What is this all about?  Well, in our experience, part of what will help you and your client succeed here is to know what you are up against, what you should fight about and what you might just have to learn to live with.

China is a predictable environment if you learn to read the bureaucratic geography and this book will help you identify where the high ground should be and where the bogs and swamps are.

Tax Analects front book jacket 24 December 2008.jpg

Tax Analects front book jacket 24 December 2008.jpg

Picking your battles in China; a street sweeping snapshot

street_sweeper.jpgIn the context of taking care of our clients here in China, we have often tried to express the idea of picking your battles when deciding what to fight about and what to just recognize as being part of the environment here that is probably not going to change.

Now, this is a very dynamic envoriment and is still rapidly growing although some Chinese are rather dissapointed at a mere 8% growth this year after so many years of double digit growth. But that still stacks up a lot better than much of the rest of the world.

But some things are not part of that dynamic change and no matter what we think, they are probably not going to change anytime soon.  And we can not really say whether that is a good thing or a bad thing.  It is, after all, their country.  After close to a decade of living here, I had another reminder of that this morning. 

On my walk to work this morning, I stopped at a cross walk to watch a street sweeper that did not. 

typical intersection.jpg

typical intersection.jpg

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