Mayer Brown - known in Asia as Mayer Brown JSM following the firm’s 2008 merger with Hong Kong’s Johnson Stokes & Master - is set to form an alliance with PRC firm Jingtian & Gongcheng once cleared by Hong Kong’s law society.

Under the proposed association the two firms will continue to operate as separate entities, but Mayer Brown will provide office space and other resources to secondees from Jingtian in Hong Kong, while the deal gives the PRC firm its first Hong Kong base and access to local law capability.

Jingtian and Gongcheng was formed in 2000 after the merger of two Beijing-based corporate firms. The firm is known for its M&A and IPO work and has a significant share of HK listings among its PRC competitors. Last year the firm advised on the $26 billion merger of state-owned train maker China CNR and China CSR, and acted as Chinese counsel on pork processor WH Group's $2 billion IPO in Hong Kong.

The Beijing-based firm’s move is the latest example of Chinese outbound appetite, which aims to capture Hong Kong capital markets work from Chinese companies. Earlier this year in May, Shanghai-based Llinks Law Offices opened in Hong Kong, while Beijing-based Han Kun Law Offices and Broad & Bright launched last year.