Insights

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How ready is Southeast Asia for digital banking?

Financial Services

Herwen Tay
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High internet penetration and a push for financial inclusion has heralded a digital banking boom across Southeast Asia, where 73% of people remain unbanked. Covid-19 has provided a further impetus for players to explore pure-play digital banking as traditional brick-and-mortar banks were forced to shut down.

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The UK's life sciences sector after Brexit

General Policy

Giulia Corsi
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On an event for the Global Counsel network, Giulia Corsi, Senior Associate; Dr Harpreet Sood, GC Adviser and Lilah Howson-Smith, Senior Associate discuss the opportunities for the UK life sciences sector as it diverges from the EU regulatory frameworks.

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The Biden administration’s student loan debt relief agenda

General Policy

Chris Rinkus
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In recent weeks, Democratic leaders in Congress have increasingly called for President Joe Biden to cancel outstanding student loan debt by executive order. On the campaign trial, candidate Joe Biden promised to forgive at least $10,000 in student loan debt, tantalising many progressives. Debt cancellation on this scale has never been tried and it could affect everything…

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General Politics

What to expect from the upcoming set of UK elections

General Politics

Alex Dawson
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Lilah Howson Smith, Senior Associate; Johnny Luk, Senior Associate; and Alex Dawson, UK Politics and Policy Practice Lead, discuss the upcoming UK elections on May 6th and why they matter.

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US fights back: the challenges to taxing digital

TMT

Miranda Lutz
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The meteoric rise of digital commerce and virtual services has raised the issue of how to tax companies that do not generate value based on their physical footprint, but nonetheless place a burden on the jurisdictions in which they operate. The digital tax issue has been percolating for several years but as major tech companies like Facebook and Netflix have raised the…

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How can the UK get to net zero? In conversation with Lord Deben

Sustainability

Geoffrey Norris
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On an event for the Global Counsel network, Elizabeth Beall, Climate and Sustainability Practice Lead and Geoffrey Norris, Senior Adviser, are joined by Lord Deben, Chair of the UK Committee on Climate Change and Former Secretary of State for the Environment.

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The EU may be entering a new era of financial market deregulation

Financial Services

Damien Sohet
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EU finance ministers last month approved a targeted simplification of rules governing EU capital markets, which they presented as a key component of the post-pandemic recovery effort. This recognition of the economic contribution of financial services broke the chain of a decade of regulatory crackdowns and the creation of powerful new pan-European supervisors. It is…

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Assessing the first 100 days of Joe Biden’s presidency

General Policy

Erin Caddell
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On call for the Global Counsel network, Erin Caddell, President of GC USA, Chris Rinkus, Practice Lead for US Political Due Diligence, and Miranda Lutz, Senior Associate, unpack the first 100 days of Joe Biden's presidency.

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Deflating float offers harsh lessons for all

General Policy

Tom King
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The disappointing first-day performance of Deliveroo, the food delivery service hailed by UK chancellor Rishi Sunak as ‘a true British tech success story’, will be treated for years to come as a salutary lesson – even if judging an IPO on its first day might be premature.

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Directors should no longer ignore government’s incursions on corporate governance

General Policy

Matt Bevington
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The dominance of the Big Four is over. At least, that’s the headline the government wants to talk about. After all, who could argue with breaking up oligopolies and increasing competition? But the most significant proposals in the government’s white paper on ‘Restoring trust in audit and corporate governance’ in fact relate to the second part: corporate governance. These…

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After Alaska: tech investment and US-China tensions

TMT

Jens Presthus
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The meeting between US and Chinese officials in Alaska on March 19th left little doubt that the new Biden administration does not mean a quick rapprochement between Beijing and Washington. If anything, Chinese officials upped the ante by making it clear that they see little downside to taking a tough line and signalling that China will emerge confident from covid-19. …

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Instagram 2.0? Microsoft offer for social media start-up Discord would present an early challenge for Biden’s trustbusters

TMT

Erin Caddell
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The headline is so common in the supercharged market for emerging technology firms that it seems almost commonplace, though still amazing in the grand arc of history: A five-year old Silicon Valley social media start-up, having doubled its active monthly user base to more than 100m global users in just a year, is in exclusive talks to be acquired by a well-established,…

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'Stranded' assets and the EU's industrial strategy

Energy & Commodities

Elizabeth Beall
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Elizabeth Beall, Climate and Sustainability Practice Lead and Giorgio Corbetta, Energy Senior Associate, look at stranded assets and the EU's industrial strategy. They unpack why it's important, what you need to know, and what's the way forward for this important issue.

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The $200 bn question: Stimulus bill provides unprecedented funding for US schools, big opportunity for ed-tech

General Policy

Chris Rinkus
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Late last week, President Joe Biden signed the American Rescue Plan (ARP), a massive $1.9 trn stimulus that will provide billions in funding to public school systems across the United States. The scale is unprecedented, with more than $122 bn allocated for elementary and secondary schools (commonly referred to as K-12 schools in the US). Combined with the two other major…

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The end of an era for self-regulation? EDAP, political advertising and the role of social media in Europe

TMT

Bart Myners
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The events at the US Capitol in January of this year may well signal a sea change in the regulatory scrutiny of social media platforms worldwide. While several prominent platforms had already moved to restrict political content, many criticised the role of social media platforms in stoking dissention. This, in turn, has renewed regulatory concern in the EU about…

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General Politics

Navigating Russian and Chinese “vaccine diplomacy” in the CEE and Western Balkans

General Politics

Alexander Smotrov
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The covid-19 vaccine rollout in Central and Eastern Europe, including the Western Balkans, has not been immune to politicisation. Vaccination is seen as a powerful tool to accelerate post-covid economic recovery alongside stimulus packages, but with Russia and China getting involved, some compare it to the debate on national security concerns about critical infrastructure…

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General Politics

German state elections and life after Merkel

General Politics

Thomas Gratowski
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Denzil Davidson, Adviser and Thomas Gratowski, Practice Lead, Global Macro discuss Germany's states elections, ahead of the federal elections in September, what the state elections tell us about the future of German politics and what it means for the EU.

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A place for “stranded” assets in the EU’s dual transition

Energy & Commodities

Giorgio Corbetta
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As the EU’s commitment to carbon neutrality by 2050 is enshrined in law, a gap in the bloc’s policy agenda remains a realistic role for fossil-fuel related industries. Almost two decades on from the first use of the term “stranded investments” – investments, such as fossil fuel power generation or transmission, that have already been made but which, prior to the end of…

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