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The European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation is, according to the EU-hosted GDPR website, “the most important change in data privacy regulation in the past 20 years.” The Act, which was approved by the EU Parliament on April 14, 2016 and will become fully effective on May 25, 2018, was designed “to harmonize data privacy laws across Europe, to protect and empower all EU citizens’ data privacy, and to reshape the way organizations across the region approach data privacy.”

The winners of the 2017 CEE Deal of the Year Awards were announced at the first ever CEE Legal Matters Deal of the Year Awards Banquet last night in Prague. The biggest smiles in the joyous and music-filled celebration of CEE lawyering, perhaps, were on the faces of Partners from Avellum and Sayenko Kharenko, which, along with White & Case and Latham & Watkins, won the award both for Ukrainian Deal of the Year and CEE Deal of the Year for their work on the 2017 Ukraine Eurobond Issue (a story initially reported by CEE Legal Matters on October 2, 2017).

Cobalt has advised BaltCap, Dasha Group AS, and others on the sale of their majority shareholding in Runway BPO to Webhelp, a global business process outsourcing and customer experience company.

The European Commission has just published its comprehensive proposal for the so-called "New Deal for Consumers", which aims to strengthen EU consumer rights and enforcement. This includes the proposal for a new Directive enabling certain qualified entities to seek redress on behalf of consumers who have been harmed by an unlawful commercial practice.

“There are four main new legislative developments which have shaken the market in Latvia,” says Andra Rubene, Partner at TGS Baltic in Riga, who lists the GDPR, amendments to Latvia’s Law on the Prevention of Money Laundering and Terrorism Financing, and changes to the country’s corporate and personal income tax laws as of primary significance.

Sorainen and Brandl & Talos have advised investment company Novalpina on the public offer by its Odyssey Europe AS subsidiary to acquire all the shares in the listed Estonian gaming group Olympic Entertainment Group, following which — assuming shareholder approval — Odyssey will delist OEG from the Nasdaq Tallinn Stock Exchange, then merge the two companies.

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