Bay area legal exam set

November 20, 2020

The 2021 GBA Legal Professional Examination will be held on January 30 and eligible applicants can apply through the Ministry of Justice (MoJ) website on or before November 26, the Department of Justice said today.


Pursuant to the decision adopted by the National People's Congress Standing Committee on authorising the State Council to implement the pilot programme regarding the GBA Legal Examination, as well as the pilot measures released by the General Office of the State Council on Hong Kong and Macau legal practitioners to obtain Mainland practice qualifications and to practise as lawyers in the nine Pearl River Delta municipalities in the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area, the MoJ issued a notice recently on the examination's details.


The department welcomed the notice, saying the examination offers significant opportunities for the Hong Kong legal services sector to provide Mainland legal services in the bay area, as well as provide diversified legal services and safeguards to clients in the bay area, including wholly-owned Hong Kong enterprises.


According to the relevant arrangements, Hong Kong legal practitioners, including young solicitors and barristers with accumulated legal practice experience of five years or above, are allowed to provide legal services in the nine Pearl River Delta municipalities in the bay area on specified civil and commercial matters (including litigation and non-litigation matters) to which the Mainland laws apply after passing the examination and obtaining a lawyer's practice certificate (Greater Bay Area).


Secretary for Justice Teresa Cheng said the examination is a measure which has responded to the suggestions and aspirations of the Hong Kong legal sector by lowering the threshold for Hong Kong legal practitioners to practise Mainland law in the bay area, adding it will no doubt provide a huge stage for the sector's development in the Mainland.


A briefing, co-hosted by the department, the MoJ’s Bureau of Lawyers' Work and Hong Kong & Macao Affairs Office, the Department of Justice of Guangdong Province and the Legal Affairs Bureau of the Macao Special Administrative Region Government, was held yesterday for the legal sector.


It allowed the sector to have a better understanding of the relevant policies as well as the current position and development opportunities for legal services in the bay area.


More than 700 people participated in the briefing online.

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