On September 1, Macau’s Rato Ling Lei & Cortés (Lektou) opened its doors in Lisbon to focus on foreign Chinese investment in Portugal.

The Portuguese desk will be driven by Óscar Alberto Madureira, who rejoins the firm after working as senior legal counsel at Melco Entertainment in Macau.

The Lisbon office aims to play a platform role among Portuguese-speaking, Macanese and Chinese clients who have operations in Portugal or wish to invest in those countries.

Speaking with IFLR1000, Lektou’s senior partner Pedro Cortés said: “We’ve been thinking about opening the office for a long time, and the reason has been mixed as one thing is related to another. This includes the relocation of the Portuguese fund to Macau and our new office in Hengqin.”

The development came shortly after the local headquarters of the $1 billion Cooperation and Development Fund between China and Portuguese-speaking countries (PSCs) was officially relocated to Macau on June 1 2017. The relocation aims to allow local companies easier access to their counterparts involved in projects in the Lusophone world.

Moreover—as part of its expansion strategy—Lektou partnered with Zhong Yin Law Firm in China and Fongs in Hong Kong in July 2016 to open up a new office in Hengqin Island in accordance with the 2013 free trade agreement CEPA—Mainland and Hong Kong Closer Economic Partnership Arrangement that allows partnership-like joint law firms in a hybrid jurisdiction structure.

Rato Ling Lei & Cortés also enjoys a long-term association with Portuguese law firm AM Associados.