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One team of Swiss and Chinese lawyers
Local - in China and Europe
Wenfei Law Secures 42.9 Million Euro Arbitration Victory in CIETAC

In a recent arbitration case administered by the China International Economic and Trade Arbitration Commission (CIETAC), Wenfei Law achieved a significant victory on behalf of a German publicly listed company against a Chinese counterparty (with large SOE stakeholders). The arbitration award in favour of Wenfei's client, resolving an impressive dispute valued at 42.9 million Euros, marks an impressive success.

The case, which involved complex international sales disputes in the renewable energy sector, required meticulous legal strategy and an in-depth understanding of both international and Chinese legal frameworks. Wenfei's team of experienced attorneys demonstrated exceptional expertise in international sales contracts and bank guarantee laws. Wenfei showed dedication in overcoming critical procedural hurdles and navigated the intricacies of the CIETAC arbitration process to secure a favourable outcome for their client.

This case adds to Wenfei's already substantial portfolio of successful arbitration cases and further establishes the firm as a trusted partner for companies seeking expert legal counsel in Sino-related international investment, trade and commercial disputes.

Holiday Notice (Sep. 29, 2023 – Oct. 7, 2023)

Dear Friends,

Please kindly note that our offices in China will be closed from September 30 to October 7, 2023, for the celebration of Chinese Mid-Autumn Day and National Holiday. During this time, our team in Zurich will be available to assist you if needed.

The Mid-Autumn Day is one of the most important traditional festivals in China, with the full moon symbolizing reunion and gratitude.

We take this opportunity to wish you and your family a happy holiday!

Wenfei reaches Milestone in the Development of Emergency Arbitration Procedures in China

On November 10, 2022, at Wenfei's request, an emergency arbitrator prohibited a Chinese party from drawing a multimillion bank guarantee. The main CIETAC arbitration had been initiated earlier, but the tribunal was not yet constituted. The Emergency Arbitrator's order was issued before the ordinary arbitral tribunal was nominated by the parties and confirmed by the arbitral institution.

Some Chinese arbitration institutions have only introduced emergency arbitration proceedings in their rules since 2015. However, despite this option having come into existence, various experts were of the opinion that under PRC law, no injunctive relief existed in arbitration. Hence, the litigants did not dare to call upon an emergency arbitrator assuming that the arbitration institutions would not accept the request for fear of conflicts of jurisdiction with the state courts or that they would, upon acceptance,  reject it in light of the aforesaid narrow expert interpretation of PRC law.

This dilemma has now been put to an end and it is clear that emergency arbitrators in China can issue injunctive relieve orders to which even third parties - in this case the guaranteeing bank - adhere. The future PRC arbitration law will equally confirm this.

Thus, a milestone has been reached for arbitration in China. The arbitration community can breathe a sigh of relief knowing that immediate legal assistance is also available under the current arbitration law, at least at CIETAC.

Wenfei’s Paul Thaler and Yaqi Liu speak at SCCC’s Legal Forum 2021

On 22 September 2021, the Swiss-Chinese Chamber of Commerce’s Legal Chapter held its annual Legal Forum in Zurich. Our managing partner Dr. Paul Thaler and our resident partner Yaqi Liu shared their insights on the arbitration practice in China with the audience, Paul Thaler being there in person while Yaqi Liu was tuned in from China.

Many thanks to the SCCC for the organization of this exciting event!

Dr. Paul Thaler admitted to CIETAC Panel of Arbitrators

We would like to congratulate our Managing Partner, Dr. Paul Thaler for having been admitted to the Panel of Arbitrators of the China International Economic and Trade Arbitration Commission.


Managing Partner Dr. Paul Thaler now certified ICC Arbitrator

Due to his in-depth knowledge of both Swiss and Chinese law, his negotiation skills in Chinese, English and German and his long experience in international commercial matters between Europe and Asia, our Managing Partner, Dr. Thaler, has been a sought-after arbitrator and party representative in arbitral proceedings for many years.

It is therefore a special pleasure to announce that Dr. Thaler has further deepened his knowledge at the ICC Advanced Arbitration Academy for Asia over a period of two years and has obtained the corresponding certificate.



Le Temps, Swiss Who is Who in China

One of the largest Swiss daily newspapers, Le Temps, has put together a list of the 15 most important Swiss people in China. The list is a wonderful mirror and shows the many ways the Swiss community is active in China. Wenfei is especially pleased that our Managing Partner Dr. Paul Thaler made it on the list. Congratulations!


Swiss Company N. AG’s Major Victory in Unconventional CIETAC Arbitration Proceedings

In recent arbitration proceedings administered by China International Economic and Trade Arbitration Commission, Wenfei has successfully advised Swiss Company N. AG in winning major mask disputes against Hong Kong based company WHG Ltd. within a short 30-day time period. Against the background of global pandemic, international traders often wish to settle their disputes in an efficient yet fair and impartial manner, thanks to the expected professionalism of CIETAC, this has proven to be entirely possible – a great comfort to all law-abiding business operators.

New Laws in China in 2019 and early 2020


2019 Market Access Negative List


Legal Chapter Forum 2019

On 12 June 2019, Dr. Thaler and Dr. Jia were invited as expert speakers at the Swiss Chinese Chamber of Commerce’s (SCCC) Legal Chapter 2019 Forum in Zurich. Wenfei shared its view of the practical implications of the newly promulgated Chinese Foreign Investment Law (FIL). Wenfei reminded Swiss companies who participate in entities in China to carefully analyse the opportunities and challenges offered by the FIL and its implementing rules, which will be published in the near future. A restructuring in order to optimize their investment in China might be advisable.

Wenfei helps Swiss company C. AG in major victory against S. E. Systems Co. Ltd.

In arbitration proceedings administered by the Shanghai Arbitration Commission, four arbitration awards have been handed down sentencing Wuxi based S.E. Systems Co. Ltd. to pay substantial amounts of contractual penalties to the Swiss company C. AG, the latter having been represented by Wenfei in the proceedings. Wenfei is delighted that in this case, S. E. Systems Co. Ltd.  has not succeeded in not settling the clearly justified claims of our client’s.

Our Efforts into the Midwest

We are happy to announce that in addition to her routine work in the Shanghai area, our Resident Partner Ms. Liu Yaqi is now also acting as our local liaison in Wuhan – the traditional hub of central China, as part of our consistent practice to provide high standard legal services to all our international and local clients. With the efforts to reach into the Midwest, we aim to provide our clients with even more legal solutions accurately suited to their needs.

Wenfei’s Resident Partner Re-elected President of SwissCham Beijing

We congratulate our Resident Partner Samuel Baumgartner to his re-election as President of SwissCham Beijing. We are pleased to be able to support a strong Swiss business community in Beijing in the year ahead and wish Samuel continued success in his office.

Terms of Payment

Our services are invoiced monthly according to the applicable hourly rates. These rates apply to all services during and after business hours. Hourly rates are usually not increased for urgent cases that need to be completed out of our office hours.

For indirect additional costs (e.g. copies, IT and telephone costs) we charge a lump sum of 3.5% of the respective net amount.

Finally, VAT is charged on the fee and incidental expenses in accordance with the recipient’s seat (China or Switzerland).

As a result of the referendum on 24 September 2017, VAT rates in Switzerland have been adjusted as of 1 January 2018. The standard rate decreases from 8% to 7.7%. In other words, the lower VAT rate of 7.7% will be charged in our invoices from 1 January 2018. VAT in China remains unchanged.

Wenfei’s Managing Director appointed as an expert to the “China Association of International Engineering Consultants” of MOFCOM

The China Association of International Engineering Consultants (CAIEC), an association operated by MOFCOM, has appointed our Managing Director, Dr. Paul Thaler, as an expert to its “consultation and examination system for projects abroad”.

Being officially elected by CAIEC, Dr. Paul Thaler will assist the MOFCOM in overseas investments of the People’s Republic of China.

Wenfei’s Resident Partner and Chief Representative Samuel Baumgartner elected President of SwissCham Beijing

At the occasion of the 2017 Annual Assembly, SwissCham Beijing has elected Samuel Baumgartner, our Resident Partner and Chief Representative in Beijing as its new President. We congratulate Samuel Baumgartner to his new role and wish him a lot of success in further strengthening the Sino-Swiss business community.

Our Team of Swiss and Local Experts in China

Wenfei Attorneys-at-law Ltd is delighted to announce that we have ensured the presence of three qualified Swiss attorneys at our offices in China again. Dr. Paul Thaler, Mr. Samuel Baumgartner and Mr. Cem Arikan LL.M. are at our client's disposal at our offices in Beijing and Shanghai.

Wenfei Attorneys-at-law offers all its services in full at all its offices. Also, we have extended our know-how in the fields of Maritime and Shipping Law with Cem Arikan, and in addition, we also speak Turkish in our offices now. 

Wenfei Attorneys-at-law emphasizes working with Swiss and local lawyers in our Chinese offices. Our representative offices in Beijing and Shanghai consist of teams of Swiss and Chinese lawyers that have obtained their degrees in the most reputable law schools of the country. Also, our lawyers gained experience by studying and working abroad.

Our colleague, Ms Liu Yaqi, obtained her LL.M. degree at the Law School of the renowned Cornell University, after graduating from Beijing Foreign Studies University. Liu Yaqi is admitted to the New York State Bar.

Our colleague, Dr. Zheng Jun is admitted to the bar in China and obtained his Ph.D. at the Law School of the University of Fribourg in Switzerland.

Our colleague Chen Fanyang currently serves as our Chinese expert in our office in Zurich, while she is simultaneously obtaining her LL.M. degree at the University of Zurich.

Our Swiss and Chinese lawyers cooperate closely on a best practice basis while offering our clients the highest quality of work.


Portrayal of Wenfei Law at the Neue Zürcher Zeitung

In its edition of 28 July 2016 and the rubric of “China meets Zurich”, the Neue Zürcher Zeitung portrayed our lawfirm. In the context of presenting our Managing Partner, Dr. Paul Thaler, the article points out our emphasis to liaise China with Switzerland, besides our legal work.

The article is accessable with the following link:

Symposium on the Chinese Economy

Dr. Paul Thaler was invited by the Chinese embassy in Berne to give a lecture on legal aspects in China’s macro-economy on July 7, 2016. The lecture dealt with the development of the Chinese economy in 2016 and also took up the topics of legal certainty and rule of law in China. The event took place at the Hotel Bellevue in Berne. Among the speakers were the Chinese ambassador Mr. GENG Wenbing, Mr. Alexander Karrer, Deputy State Secretary of the Federal Department of Finance, Mr. Attilio Zanetti, Director of the Department of Economic Analysis of the Swiss National Bank, Mr. Rudolf Minsch, chief economist of economiesuisse, the former Swiss ambassador to China Mr. M. Blaise Godet, Mr. Henrique Schneider, chief economist of the Swiss Trade Association (SGV) and representatives of the UBS Group AG and the Credit Suisse Group. The participants, who lectured in German, French and Chinese, enjoyed a successful afternoon and a dinner in a pleasant atmosphere. 

CIETAC award in favour of our client

Another success of our arbitration team has been achieved. At the end of March 2016, CIETAC rendered the final award in a dispute between our client, a Swiss company, against a large listed company. Our client was awarded a multi-million dollar amount. 

Swiss television interviewed Mr Paul Thaler

On January 25, 2016 the Swiss TV (SRF) broadcasted an interview with Wenfei’s Managing Partner Mr Paul Thaler in its program “ECO”. Mr Thaler was asked about legal certainty for Swiss companies in China. Furthermore, some successful M&A - transactions of Chinese enterprises in Switzerland, which were accompanied by Wenfei, were mentioned.

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