Johann PHOTO
Name: Johann Spies
Firm Name: Arion Legal
Country: Laos
Expertise: Regulatory Law


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Professional Biography:

To complement his experience as a practicing attorney, Johann Spies has experience as an in-house legal counsel for a company in the credit provision and insurance markets which operates in a number of jurisdictions.

Johann began his career at Webber Wentzel (the South African Linklaters associate and one of the largest firms in Africa) and has practiced in Yangon, Myanmar, where he specialised in cross-border transactions, commercial arrangements and the regulatory framework in the South East Asian markets. Prior to joining Arion Legal, Johann practiced as a partner at Clyde & Co, Johannesburg, in the corporate and commercial department. Johann prides himself on delivering legally sound advice which is commercially minded and reflects an understanding of clients’ businesses.

Firm Overview:

Arion Legal (formerly McDonald Steed McGrath Lawyers) has been operating in Lao PDR since 2008 and is the only Australian law firm registered in Lao PDR.

Our Vientiane office provides international standard Lao legal and tax advice and documentation for foreign investors operating in, or looking to invest in, Lao PDR. Our approach is commercially focused and adapted to suit changing economic and regulatory conditions.

We have represented foreign and local clients across a broad range of commercial issues concerning foreign investment into Lao PDR. We have participated in several mining projects and acted as Lao Counsel to the Government of Lao PDR and lenders on numerous large-scale hydropower projects including:

– Nam Sim Hydropower Project (USD17.6M investment)
– Nam Lik 1 and 2 Hydropower Project (USD 150M investment)
– Nam Ou (USD 700M investment)

Arion Legal has been appointed as Honorary Counsel to the British Embassy and has also acted as Lao Counsel to the Singapore and Australian Embassies.

Our firm has strong links to the local and international business community and actively participates in community events. Arion Legal holds membership with numerous organisations including Australian Chamber of Commerce (AUSTCHAM) and the British Business Group.

Our Lawyers In Lao PDR:

Johann Spies, our Country Manager, is based in Vientiane and is supported by a talented team of foreign and Lao lawyers and tax advisors. The firm’s directors, as well as a team of specialist lawyers and consultants, provide additional expertise and support to the Vientiane office. Our team also travels within Lao PDR and internationally in response to client and project demands.

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