International firm Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner is to lay off around 40 employees and to close its Beijing office in response to ‘continued economic uncertainty around the globe’.

Some 14 fee earners and 26 business services staff are expected to lose their jobs in a global redundancy consultation. The firm also announced plans to scale back its presence in Asia – where it currently has six outposts – by closing its office in Beijing.

The firm has announced a ‘stronger than expected’ first half of 2020, however, and plans to ease the salary introductions that were introduced during lockdown. Staff earning over £32,000 will see their pay reduced by 7% as opposed to 15% from August, in measures that are expected to extend through the rest of the year.

Co-chairs Lisa Mayhew and Steve Baumer, said: ‘After exceeding performance expectations during the first half of this extraordinary year, we’re pleased to begin rolling back salary reductions necessitated during the worst of the pandemic conditions. Looking ahead, we plan to continue taking proactive steps to provide as much clarity as we can to all our colleagues and to ensure our firm is best positioned moving forward.

‘While a difficult decision to make, we believe the limited adjustments to our workforce are in the best interest of our clients, our business, and our people for the long term.’