Responding to climate change is now a challenge shared by all humankind, and countries around the world, including Japan, are rapidly moving forward with efforts to achieve carbon neutrality by 2050. In this field, the urgent strategic, operational and reputational challenges are considerable, but so are the opportunities for growth.

Baker McKenzie is at the forefront of market-leading deals in the renewable energy and clean technology sectors, including advising on hydrogen- and CCS-related projects. Our multidisciplinary global team helps energy producers, investors and users forge their energy transition journeys in an increasingly complex regulatory environment, enabling them to transform, powerfully.

How We Can Help

Capital Markets

Our Capital Markets practice group has long been recognized as a pioneer in securities and capital markets work in Japan.

Our team advises Japanese and foreign corporations and government organizations on various stock- and bond-related issues. The team also provides advice on the offering and sale of securities in both domestic and international markets; assists with the development of financial products that are consistent with local regulations and global standards; provides documentation support for initial public offerings (IPOs) and public offerings without listings (POWLs); helps with the offering and sale of bonds, investment trusts and real estate investment trusts (REITs); and assists with the establishment of funds and international tender offers.

As the Tokyo arm of the international firm Baker McKenzie, we work collaboratively as a global group and have the ability to act immediately and seamlessly on overseas stock exchange listings and other cross-border transactions. We also advise clients on regulations relevant to foreign securities transactions.

Carbon Capture & Storage

Carbon Capture and Storage technology provides companies and governments with an opportunity to reduce the impact of greenhouse gas emissions during the transition to a low-carbon economy. Yet policymakers, legislators and project proponents often struggle to make CCS cost effective, provide incentives for CCS technology development, regulate cross-border carbon dioxide transport, and establish property rights for carbon storage.

Our world-leading Climate Change Practice has a long history of helping clients overcome these challenges, counseling national and state governments including Australia, New Zealand and Norway on CCS legislative and policy development, technologies and projects. Through our work on these projects, we've developed relationships with funders such as the Asian Development Bank, British Foreign and Commonwealth Office, the UN Environmental Program, EU and World Bank. As a result, our lawyers have built an unrivalled reputation for providing expert legal advice in this niche market.


Hydrogen is attracting worldwide attention as an essential element for achieving carbon neutrality. The Japanese government formulated the world's first Basic Hydrogen Strategy in 2017 and it is now preparing various support programs and other measures to realize a hydrogen society. Hydrogen has a wide range of applications, including automotive transportation, hydrogen-fueled power generation and hydrogen-reduced steel production. This field is expected to expand rapidly in the future.

Our firm was among the first to recognize the importance of hydrogen and establish a global hydrogen working group to share information on hydrogen systems, policies and know-how around the world. We have also contributed to the future development of the hydrogen sector by providing advice on advanced hydrogen projects.

Mergers & Acquisitions

Our Corporate/M&A practice group provides a comprehensive range of corporate and commercial legal services to clients. The attorneys in our group frequently represent publicly and privately held entities in Japan in corporate acquisitions (including mergers, takeover bids, business transfers and share exchanges and transfers), the formation of joint ventures, capital tie-ups, business restructurings, business divestitures and many other types of transactions.

As part of the Baker McKenzie network, our lawyers are able to closely liaise with attorneys in offices around the world. We provide solutions to the diverse array of issues faced by Japanese clients pursuing business ventures overseas through cross-border M&A or other means. We are also experienced in supporting foreign clients investing in Japan.

In addition, the team is supported by a number of specialist lawyers across our practice groups who can provide the necessary advice that is frequently required in today’s complex M&A transactions. Our areas of expertise include general corporate, securities, antitrust law, intellectual property, industry laws, employment, foreign investment, trade law, environmental law, tax, legal investigations and due diligence, among others.

For each assignment, we specifically tailor and assemble a team of lawyers capable of handling all aspects of our clients' corporate transactions in a timely and efficient manner. We also assist clients in determining optimum investment structures, drafting documents and negotiating in both Japanese and English, and in carrying out integration and compliance processes after the completion of an investment.


The Tokyo Projects Group is a team of more than 10 members, covering all aspects of energy, mining and infrastructure transactions and disputes, including regulatory compliance matters. The 15 practice / industry groups at Baker & McKenzie (Gaikokuho Joint Enterprise) together boast over 170 professionals: approximately 110 Japanese attorneys, around 60 foreign qualified lawyers, and other professionals, including tax and patent attorneys.

The Projects Group in Tokyo includes lawyers with qualifications from the US, the UK, Australia, New Zealand, Hong Kong and Japan. Most EMI lawyers are bilingual. Languages spoken include Japanese, English, Spanish, Hindi, Gujarati, Mandarin, Cantonese and Thai. The Projects Group has a long history of representing Japanese companies, contractors and consultants in investments and other transactions in foreign countries.

Our major clients include utilities, trading houses, energy and mining companies, contractors, consultants, financial institutions, renewable energy developers and electricity retailers.

Renewable Energy & Clean Technology

Renewable and clean energy markets are attracting greater interest than ever before. The Japanese government has set a target to raise the share of renewable energy in Japan's total power supply mix (energy mix) from 18% in FY 2019 to 36-38% in FY 2030. Further expansion of renewable and clean energy sources, such as offshore wind power and storage batteries, is expected in the future. At the same time, renewable investment opportunities in overseas markets continue to attract strong interest from Japanese sponsors and contractors. Choosing an advisor with the right experience and insight is paramount to capturing opportunities, managing risks and achieving business objectives.

We frequently represent renewable energy project consortiums and sponsors, contractors, operators, financiers and financial institutions. In a growing cross-border market, clients leverage our combined expertise in Japanese and foreign law and our strong experience in advising Japanese clients when they invest in renewable projects located overseas.

Our Renewable and Clean Energy Group comprises members of our Tokyo Finance & Projects Group. As an understanding of tax issues is also vital for these cases, the team also collaborates with our Tax & Transfer Pricing Group to advise clients. Our diverse team enables us to provide a full scope of legal expertise in the renewables sector, whether by assisting Japanese clients exploring projects overseas, advising foreign clients with inbound developments or coordinating purely domestic transactions.


We are first movers

We set up the world’s first climate change practice more than 20 years ago and we haven’t stopped innovating since. Because we work for vanguard organizations setting sustainability standards and collaborate with institutions like the World Economic Forum, the UN Global Compact and the World Business Council for Sustainable Development to shape future debate and policy, our lawyers bring unique insight on the direction of travel of sustainability regulation, risk and best practices.

We are agile thinkers

Our expertise on transactions, advisory and contentious matters across all major markets and industries gives us a top-down view on sustainability that matches your needs. We frequently address big picture questions on strategy as well as specific legal risks, both from a global and local perspective.

We live by our values

We are on our own sustainability journey and that means that we share your experiences and challenges and can meet you where you are. Sustainability is at the heart of our strategy and we lead the legal profession on matters of inclusion & diversity, environmental performance, SDG alignment, and more.

Sustainability for Financial Institutions and Sustainable Finance

Financial institutions are critical players in the transition to a carbon-neutral economy and, because of their role in allocating capital, they have the potential to act as catalysts in achieving better environmental, social and governance (ESG) outcomes in society generally. Sustainability is relevant to every aspect of a financial institution's business, for example, their prudential resilience in the wake of climate change, to how they are run; with the requirement for appropriate corporate governance, well-designed policies and procedures, accompanied by compliant reporting and disclosure.

Sustainability considerations are now also at the forefront of services provided to customers and participation in financial markets generally. For well over a decade, the sustainable investment market has witnessed accelerated growth as global capital markets have quickly evolved to support companies’ growing desires to embed ESG considerations into their long-term strategies. Global funds and private equity are increasingly associating their investment strategies with sustainability classifications and targets while making public and pre-contractual disclosures around their approach to ESG, as lenders are exploring credible transition plans to help their borrowers move closer to net zero carbon emissions.

In doing so, litigation and enforcement are key risks faced by financial institutions, for example, over greenwashing allegations. It is vital then to understand how to mitigate and manage these risks together with the strategies available to bring disputes to a satisfactory conclusion, safeguarding brand and reputation. The need for quality transactional, advisory and disputes legal services to support your ESG journey has never been greater.