Allen & Overy has opened a new office in Seoul to expand its Korea practice and strengthen its relationship with Korean companies, quasi-sovereigns and financial institutions.

The Korean office will be led by energy and project finance partner Matthias Voss, alongside partner Jean Lee and counsel Kyu Bang.

Managing partner Voss, commenting in a statement, said: “Establishing a presence on the ground will enable us to bring the full weight of our international network combined with our deep sector expertise and product knowledge to bear for clients located here or wishing to invest. It will also enable us to continue to broaden the scope of work we offer our clients, not just in projects, capital markets and M&A but also in areas such as such as antitrust, arbitration and IP.”

Having a physical presence does not enable Allen & Overy to offer local Korean law advice and it will continue to work with local relationship firms. The Korean legal market awaits the implementation of phase three of an agreed regulatory framework, which will allow foreign and Korean lawyers to work together in a partnership arrangement.

Last month, US firm White & Case opened up in Seoul – its seventh office in Asia.