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The continued rise in the number of sales in 2017 confirmed the revival of the Slovenian real estate market that began in 2014 (after the end of the economic crisis). While the prices of residential real estate in Slovenia hit bottom in 2015, last year they increased more than ten percent over the previous year. Real estate prices have continued to rise in the first few months of this year as well.

To a large extent, the ability of law firm marketing and business development experts to successfully promote the firms they work within depends on the support they get from their firms’ partners. So we asked them: What partner at your firm would you single out for her/his recognition of the value of what you do and ability to get you what you need efficiently and quickly?

On January 11, 2018, CEE Legal Matters reported that Dentons advised the London branch of UniCredit Bank AG and MUFG as coordinators on a EUR 750 million revolving credit facility provided by a group of 13 banks to MOL Plc, the Hungarian multinational oil and gas company. CMS advised MOL on the deal, which represented the largest financing deal in Hungary in 2017.

Starting May 25, 2018 the General Data Protection Regulation will come into effect. Although it will apply directly in all EU Member States, Member States have the option to add additional regulations to certain specific situations. This article sets out a brief overview of the key provisions of the draft of the relevant Croatian law, which is in procedure before the Croatian Parliament at the moment of writing of this article.

Erika Papp Takes Over from Gabriella Ormai as Managing Partner at CMS Hungary

Based on the transparency requirements of the GDPR, companies must now provide more detailed information on data processing. The usual form of relaying this information to the public is through a privacy notice. Now that May 25, 2018 is fast approaching and companies are working towards GDPR compliance, such privacy notices must be finalized.

In December 2017, CMS published the latest edition of its annual “Infrastructure Index” report, which compares the political, economic, and legal environments for investors in infrastructure in 40 countries and constitutes a guide to the world’s most attractive destinations for infrastructure investment. According to the report, the five most attractive destinations for infrastructure investment are the Netherlands, Canada, Germany, the United Kingdom, and Australia.

Last year was a good year for the Bulgarian economy, which registered 3.6% GDP growth. The Bulgarian Government plans to further boost the economy in 2018, and initial projections vary from 3% to 4% growth. The main trigger for this will be the continuation of spending public funds on strategic infrastructure projects.

Croatia stands among the highest ranked countries when it comes to the compliance of its PPP legislative framework with international standards. Reports issued by international institutions such as the EBRD and the EIB have praised Croatia for its elaborate legal framework, strong institutional capacities, transparent procurement practices, easy access to justice (including arbitration), and a range of security instruments facilitating financing.

Austria is definitely lagging behind in terms of Fiber-to-the-Home (FTTH) penetration: According to recent data of the FTTH Council Europe, only one country worldwide has a worse penetration rate than Austria, while other sources suggest there are two countries below Austria. For this reason many initiatives have been implemented on municipal and provincial levels to provide Austrian households and undertakings with high-speed Internet access in parts of the country where a purely commercial assessment would not justify such investments. Obviously this is not yet enough.

Slovenia: Fine-Tuning of the Tax System

In the beginning of 2018, Slovenia introduced several minor and mainly administrative changes to its tax legislation, mostly addressing and resolving inconsistencies in the legislation that had been detected in practice. 

On the first anniversary of the introduction of Hungary’s long-awaited renewable energy support scheme (known as “METAR”), we look back at its first year and ahead to the future of renewable energy in Hungary from a legal perspective.

Over the last years, Croatia has produced more electricity from renewable than from fossil sources. The share of renewables in electric energy generation varies depending on hydrological conditions, as the majority of electric energy in Croatia is generated from large hydropower plants.

For the past five years the financial market in Slovenia has been characterized by a process involving the selling of non-performing loan and leasing receivables (“Receivables”), mostly to foreign investors. According to information published by the Bank of Slovenia, Slovenian banks still have approximately EUR 1.5 billion of non-performing loans on their balance sheets, and we expect to see more of these loans being sold in the next two years. 

Investors had reason to be apprehensive about the prospects of Emerging European markets at the outset of 2017: protracted Brexit negotiations hung a cloud over Europe; Eurosceptic parties were widely expected to succeed in imminent elections; and anti-immigration and nationalistic sentiments reared their ugly head.  

CMS Partner Ana Radnev has a unique profile. Born and educated in Romania, joined CMS in Bucharest, then moved first to the firm’s London office (during which time she became English law qualified), then to the firm’s office in Prague. Since 2013, when CMS opened its Istanbul office, Radnev has divided her time between the Czech Republic and Turkey.

Andrzej Posniak started his career in law at CMS in 2003 as a corporate trainee and, step by step, become a qualified tax advisor, then a Partner and Head of the Tax Team in CMS Warsaw's Corporate Department. In addition, Andrzej also fulfills General Counsel and Risk Manager roles for the firm in Poland. CEE Legal Matters sat down with Andrzej to learn more about his unique role.

CMS at a Glance

CMS Sofia is a full-service law firm, the largest international law firm in Bulgaria and one of the largest providers of legal services in the local market as a whole. The breadth and depth of our practice means that our lawyers are specialised, with a level of specialisation that few of our competitors can match.

CMS Sofia is the Bulgarian branch of CMS, a top ten global legal and tax services provider with over 5000 lawyers in 43 countries and 78 offices across the world.

CMS entered the Bulgarian market as one of the first internationally active law firms in 2005 and is now among the most respected legal advisors in the country. We have 7 partners, 4 counsel and over 30 lawyers in our office in Sofia.

Our legal experts, who are rooted in Bulgaria’s local culture, can also draw on years of experience in foreign countries and are at home in several legal systems at once. We know the particularities of the local market just as well as the needs of our clients and combine both to achieve optimum solutions. Our lawyers are Bulgarian qualified and we also have English qualified experts – all of them regularly working on cross-border mandates.

In our work, we focus on M&A, Energy, Projects and Construction, Banking and Finance, Real Estate, Media, IP and IT law, Tax, Employment law, Competition, Procurement and any kind of Dispute resolution, including arbitration and mediation. What’s more, we also take care of the entire legal management of our clients’ projects.

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