Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld has appointed Oli Charlesworth as a partner in its Abu Dhabi finance practice. Charlesworth specialises in project finance, general banking and Islamic finance. He joins the firm from Norton Rose in Abu Dhabi, having been based in the Middle East for almost six years. Charlesworth has advised sponsors and lenders in relation to Islamic, conventional and multi-sourced project financings in the Middle East, Africa and South-East Asia across a range of sectors including power, water, infrastructure, metals, petrochemicals and gas.

DFDL Mekong has boosted its Vietnam practice with the appointment of Jérôme Buzenet as a new partner, effective from 1 January 2012. He will act as deputy country manager for Vietnam. Buzenet started his career in France in 1998 at Bureau Francis Lefebvre and also practiced at Linklaters. Prior to joining the firm, he was counsel at Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer’s Hanoi office, leading Freshfields’ capital markets practice for Vietnam. His experience includes high-profile M&A transactions and major securities/capital markets and investment fund matters.

DLA Piper has appointed Troy Doyle as a partner in its Singapore office to lead the firm’s restructuring and distressed investment team in Asia. Doyle is a leading restructuring lawyer with more than 13 years’ experience in the Asia Pacific region. He joins from Norton Rose Australia and was previously the restructuring practice leader at Clifford Chance for South East Asia. He specialises in financial and corporate restructuring and insolvency advice, distressed M&As, distressed debt trading and other special opportunity transactions.

White & Case has expanded its China M&A practice with the hire of new partner Alex Zhang from Jones Day. He joins the firm as head of its Shanghai office, as well as head of its China corporate and M&A practice. A native of the PRC, Zhang is a recognized leader in China M&A, corporate and private equity. He has over 20 years’ experience in advising international and Chinese clients on China-related matters. He has advised on a number of notable transactions in 2011, including the sale of a majority interest in CITIC Pharmaceutical and China Health System to Shanghai Pharmaceutical.

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