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How China’s new privacy law will affect South African business

South African companies associated with China need to be aware of the country’s recently passed Personal Information Protection Act (PIPL), which came into force in November 2021, said law firm Webber Wenzel.

According to South African Revenue Agency statistics, China is South Africa’s major trading partner. In July 2021, imports from China to South Africa accounted for the majority of national imports (19.4%), and exports from South Africa to China accounted for the majority of South Africa’s exports (12.6%).

Moreover, China’s investment in the South African economy has been steadily increasing over the years. Chinese organizations are investing in key South African economic sectors, including energy, electricity and other infrastructure development initiatives.

“Following the China-South Africa trade and investment roundtable in China in July 2021, relations between the two countries are likely to be further strengthened in the near future,” said Webber Wenzel.

“Chinese laws and regulations are important for South African organizations that do business with organizations in China and abroad.”

Of particular importance, the company said, is a new privacy law passed in China, entitled “Personal Information Protection Law” (PIPL).

“PIPL will come into effect on November 1, 2021. In many respects, PIPL is similar to the EU’s General Data Protection Regulation and South Africa’s Personal Information Protection Act (POPIA). Includes unique features of.

“South African organizations in the categories described below should consider PIPL.”

Below are some of the important considerations that South African companies should be aware of.

“South African organizations engaged in trade relations with China, forming part of a Chinese corporate group, or having other business relations with China are approaching the compliance deadline of November 1, 2021. With that in mind, we need to be aware of the compliance requirements contained in PIPL, Webberwenzel said.

  • Commentary by Peter Grealy (partner) and Cindy Leibowitz (knowledge lawyer) of WebberWentzel, and Alex Roberts of Linklaters (Shanghai)

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How China’s new privacy law will affect South African business

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