Fried, Frank, Harris, Shriver & Jacobson chair David Greenwald says the firm’s decision to effectively close its Hong Kong and Shanghai offices and pull out of Asia, as revealed by The American Lawyer on Monday, was a “difficult but necessary decision.”

Greenwald flew to Hong Kong last Thursday with executive director Alan Parsons to inform partners that the offices, which a source with knowledge of the situation said are operating at a loss, would be wound down over the coming months. The firm will maintain service offices in both locations and will retain its Chinese practice license, but will be unlikely to employ full-time fee-earners in the region.

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