The European Commission has proposed on the 17th of November 2021 the “Proposal for a regulation on deforestation-free products” (Draft Deforestation Regulation, relevant documents here), a regulation to prevent the entrance into the European Union’s market of cattle (live cattle, meat and leather), cocoa, coffee, oil palm, soya and wood and certain products that either contain or are made using these together Relevant Products), associated with deforestation and forest degradation. The Relevant Products are set out in Article 1 of the Draft Deforestation Regulation, while its Annex I list the full range of by-products that are subject to its rules.

read more

The common rules of origin and cumulation of the Pan-Euro-Mediterranean (PEM) Convention are a central instrument in the facilitation of trade and the integration of supply chains by way of preferential tariff treatment within the PEM zone, which stretches across the European Union to the other 24 contracting parties (EFTA countries, the Faroe Islands, Turkey and the Mediterranean countries of the Western Balkans, North Africa and the Middle East, including some of their neighbouring countries). The Contracting Parties have been negotiating a revision of the convention since 2012, in order for it to better reflect changing economic realities.

read more

BLOMSTEIN advises German defense AI company Helsing on its EUR 102.5 million Series A financing round with regard to German investment control law. As part of this financing round, the European investment company Prima Materia has invested around EUR 100 million in the company. Helsing was founded in 2021 with offices in Munich, Berlin and London. The software startup plans to provide AI technology to different defense and national security agencies of liberal democratic states.

read more

BLOMSTEIN is advising ADTRAN, Inc. (ADTRAN) on the German foreign direct investment and merger control aspects of its business combination with the network technology company ADVA Optical Networking SE (ADVA). By entering into the business combination, the companies seek to become a leader in providing end-to-end fiber networking solutions.

read more

Roland Stein and Bruno Galvão will be editing a column at the Brazilian legal journal JOTA. JOTA is a leading specialised legal journal in Brazil, with an average of one million readers each month.

read more

Brazilian exporters of steel and iron, aluminium, fertilisers, and cement will have to adapt to a new export regulation in Europe. The European Commission has proposed its final draft to a new tax with major consequences for Brazilian exports, the world’s first carbon border tax called “Carbon Border Adjustment Mechanism” (CBAM).

read more

Exportadores brasileiros de aço e ferro, alumínio, fertilizantes e cimento deverão se adequar a novas regras de exportação para a Europa. A Comissão Europeia acaba de apresentar sua proposta final de uma nova taxação que trará grandes consequências a exportadores, o primeiro imposto aduaneiro de carbono do mundo – o mecanismo de ajustamento das emissões de carbono nas fronteiras, em inglês Carbon Border Adjustment Mechanism (CBAM).

read more

BLOMSTEIN has advised Zoom Video Communications Inc. (Zoom) on the German foreign direct investment aspects of the direct acquisition of 100% of the shares of the language processing software and services company Karlsruhe Information Technology Solutions – kites GmbH (kites).

read more

The 17th Amendment of the Foreign Trade and Payments Ordinance (Außenwirtschaftsverordnung, AWV) came into force on 1 May 2021 and forms part of a series of measures aimed at increasing investment control in Germany. The Amendment introduces changes to the legal regime for foreign direct investment, particularly with regard to atypical forms of acquisitions as well as procedural aspects of the regime. In addition to the expansion of the case groups that may be subject to cross-sectoral examination (see 1st Briefing of the FDI Briefing Series), the adjustment of the thresholds for voting rights and changes to the sector-specific review (see 2nd Briefing of the FDI Briefing Series), the Amendment aligns the law with established practice. It makes changes to atypical forms of acquisitions and introduces an intra-group exemption. Further, it includes a transitional provision aimed at providing clarity on the applicability of the newly amended Sections of the AWV.

read more

The 17th Amendment of the Foreign Trade and Payments Ordinance (Außenwirtschaftsverordnung, AWV) came into force on 1 May 2021. It forms part of a series of measures, including the Amendments of the Foreign Trade and Payments Act (Außenwirtschaftsgesetz, AWG) as well as the 15th and 16th Amendments of the AWV, aimed at tightening rules on foreign direct investment. As a result, more investment projects may be subject to the reporting obligation, leading to a potential increase in restrictions for or prohibitions of acquisitions. In our first briefing, we summarised the expansion of case groups that may be subject to cross-sectoral examination. This second part of our three-part briefing series on foreign direct investment deals with the increased thresholds relevant for the cross-sectoral review of corporate acquisitions. In addition, this briefing summarises the changes to the sector-specific examination, according to which the entire defence sector (all goods listed in Part I Section A of the Export List) is now subject to the investment control regime.

read more