Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer has hired a new energy partner in Hong Kong to strengthen its Asian banking, finance and energy practice.

Thomas Ng joins the firm from magic circle rival Linklaters where he was a partner at its office in Beijing.

David Trott, global head of the Freshfield’s finance practice, said of the hire: "Tom's experience in energy deals and outbound M&A for Chinese businesses complement his core discipline of banking. This combination of skills and experience, together with his language skills, makes him an important hire. The Chinese banks continue to support Chinese companies going abroad as well as carrying out M&A deals in their own right. Tom is a key part of our strategy to increase the number of high-profile deals we do for Chinese companies, as well as supporting the work of our projects team in the region."

While at Linklaters, Ng developed a strong reputation advising Chinese banks and companies on large outbound banking, projects and energy transactions throughout Asia and beyond.

In boosting its Asia practice Freshfields has made a strong start to 2015. Earlier in March – also at Linklaters’ expense - the firm strengthened its capital markets practice with the hire of partner David Ludwick in Hong Kong.

Linklaters has had a tougher start to the year with a number of departures in addition to Ludwick and Ng. In Hong Kong it lost private equity partner Peggy Wang and private equity lawyer Kyungseok Kim to White & Case, and energy lawyer James Douglass relocated to London from Beijing to join King & Wood Mallesons. In December last year corporate partner Mark Cooper left the firm for Hogan Lovells in Singapore.