The first wholly owned Chinese law firm has been launched in the UK as it looks to target Chinese businesses setting up abroad.

Yangtze Law, which is licensed as an alternative business structure to allow for foreign ownership, aims to capitalise on the growing number of Chinese companies looking for foreign investment.

Its offices will be based in London near Chancery Lane, and the firm plans to open more offices in Hong Kong and New York in the next 12 months.

Steve Ng (pictured), the secretary general of the Yantzejiang Legal Network and one of the firms founders, explained that the firm’s aim was not to ‘step on anyone’s toes’, but to expand Chinese participation in the UK market.

‘There are an increasing number of Chinese firms looking to invest and do business in or though the UK, but for whom cultural and legal differences can be a real barrier.

‘Yangtze Law will fulfil a need that has not previously been met by the UK legal market and, over the near to long term, will help to unlock the door for a new group of Chinese investors.’

Exeter-based Michelmores will support the new firm, providing back-office and regulatory services. Its managing partner Malcolm Dickinson will serve as chief executive.