“GLOBALIZATION FOR BUSINESS & LAWYERS: REGULATORY AND REPUTATION RISKS IN A NATIONALISTIC GLOBAL MARKETPLACE”

The Congress, to be held on March 14 to 16, 2019 at Hotel Taj Lands End, Mumbai, India, will bring together the best in business to discuss recent developments in law, the impact of regulatory change, and how businesses can adapt to and flourish under these changes in the larger interest of the nation

The Constitution is often called a “living document” because of its ability to change with the changing times. Significantly, it is the framework on which the law stands. The Judiciary has been instrumental in interpreting the Constitution, and consequently, the law of the land, to suit the changing needs of society.

Over 2017 and 2018, we’ve seen some significant legal developments. In India, the past few years have witnessed groundbreaking policy and legislative reforms such as demonetization and the implementation of the Goods and Services Tax (GST); the strengthening of institutions including the Reserve Bank of India, the Enforcement Directorate and the Securities and Exchange Board of India; the toughening of laws like the Prevention of Money Laundering Act, Companies Act, and Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code; and more recently, introduction of newer legislation like the Fugitive Economic Offenders Bill and important changes to the Prevention of Corruption (Amendment) Act 2018. All of these are aimed at creating Greater accountability, while reigning in fraud, corruption, black money, and improving the overall economic climate.

The writing’s on the wall: India is making rapid strides towards claiming its rightful place in the world order. However, one cannot ignore the fact that the global economy, too, is undergoing a sea change. While the European Union (EU), India, China, and a few other trading nations are continuing to espouse the cause of global unity, countries like the US (and UK) are increasingly adopting and promoting protectionist nationalistic policies to the extent of demanding loyalty from “friends” and penalizing nations unwilling to fall in line with US policies. And when businesses engage in conduct not supported by the US Government, they face a barrage of criticisms that ranges from negative White House “tweets” which can severely impact shared value to punitive sanctions. What does this mean for businesses in India and businesses wanting to invest in India, for General Counsel and for lawyers advising businesses when the norms of international dealings are ignored and nationalistic unilateral policies are on the rise. Is there no longer any “common good”; rather, is all that we are left with is national, patriotic slogans and interests?

How do businesses – more particularly, businesses in India as well as those wanting to invest in India – and the lawyers advising them deal with such isolationist, xenophobic policies! How do they walk the tightrope between the common good and what is good for individual nations!

With a view to untangling this dilemma, we are announcing the 8TH ANNUAL GENNEXT BUSINESS & LAW CONGRESS 2019 based on the theme, “Globalization for Business & Lawyers: Regulatory and Reputation Risks in a Nationalistic Global Marketplace”.

We will bring together policymakers, regulatory heads, jurists, industrialists, promoters of companies, directors, CEOs, CFOs, partners, experts, lawyers, corporates, academia, and members of the media in targeted discussions around globalization in a nationalistic global marketplace.

To this end, the Congress will throw light on significant developments in the past few years from both within and outside India that are likely to influence the coming year and beyond so that current and future scenarios can be evaluated in the light of these changes. On a more general note, the Congress will facilitate meaningful exchange of ideas and information; help build professional networks; and advance the status of the legal profession as a key group involved in business, legal, and policy reforms and practice.

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