Jay Cohen

Partner and Director, Cambodia
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T: +855 23 964 210
F: +855 23 964 215




English, Chinese


JD, Washington University School of Law

MA, Washington University School of Law

BA, Emory University

Jay Cohen is a partner and director of Tilleke & Gibbins’ Cambodia practice, leading the Phnom Penh office’s commercial and intellectual property practices. 
With over 14 years of experience in Asia, Jay is an authority on inbound investments in the region. His practice covers every stage of the investment process, beginning with offshore structuring issues and market entry into Cambodia, including advising on appropriate entities, tax considerations, licensing requirements, intellectual property protection, and labor compliance matters. He also regularly assists clients with implementing appropriate corporate and investment structures, advising on ongoing operations, and negotiating and drafting commercial contracts.
Jay has particular expertise in the energy industry, in which he frequently assists clients with acquisition of energy resources and infrastructure, handles upstream licensing and transactional work, and advises on regulatory compliance in emerging Southeast Asian markets. He is also a well-respected practitioner to the technology industry, frequently advising innovative technology companies on their Southeast Asian operations, with a particular focus on the regulatory framework applicable to FinTech and other professional services technology. He is an active member of the firm's Technology Industry Group.
More broadly, Jay is a trusted advisor to businesses on a variety of general corporate, commercial, intellectual property, and compliance matters in Cambodia, including licensing and regulation; civil aviation compliance procedures (including aircraft registration and deregistration); real estate investment structuring; resource development project licensing and concessions; trademark and patent registration and enforcement; labor and employment matters; and mergers and acquisitions.
Jay is a truly global practitioner, entrusted with high-value commercial matters by both local clients in Cambodia and international clients from across Asia, Europe, and the United States alike. He consistently provides practical, innovative solutions to the dynamic challenges that arise within a developing legal framework.
Jay earned his J.D. from Washington University School of Law in St. Louis, Missouri, alongside an M.A. in East Asian Studies, and is licensed to practice law in the state of California. He is conversant in Chinese (Mandarin).
  • Advised multinational clients on the acquisition of oil and gas blocks in Cambodia, Vietnam, Kazakhstan, and the United Kingdom.

  • Represented a major global energy company in negotiating the terms of a transnational gas pipeline in Southeast Asia.

  • Drafted and advised on the service and process agreements for one of Asia’s largest refineries.
  • Drafted license and service agreements for telecom platforms in Indonesia, Israel, Kazakhstan, The Netherlands, Thailand, the United States, and Vietnam. 

  • Advised on and drafted original design manufacturing transactions for a major global consumer electronics company for the production of mobile phones.

  • Advised banks and Fortune 500 companies on know your customer and anti-corruption requirements in Southeast Asia.

  • Drafted and advised on loan and security agreements, and banking opinions in Cambodia for international banks. 

  • Advised real estate developers on all aspects of real estate development projects from initial structuring issues, land acquisition, security issues, real estate development rules, condominium management rules and commercial agreements with buyers.

  • Acted as legal advisor to the administrator in the first insolvency proceeding filed in Cambodia for Nautisco Seafood Manufacturing.

  • Represented creditor and participated in the creditor’s committee in connection with Cambodia’s second insolvency proceeding for Mfone.

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June 18, 2020

MIP Asia-Pacific Awards 2020: Tilleke & Gibbins Named Firm of the Year in Four Major Categories

On June 18, 2020, Managing Intellectual Property revealed the winners of its annual Asia-Pacific Awards, which recognize the top IP firms in the Asia-Pacific region based on the results of extensive...

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June 1, 2020

Tilleke & Gibbins and TLCA to Cohost Webinar on Investment in CLMV

Yuwadee Thean-ngarm, Waewpen Piemwichai, Jay Cohen, Dino Santaniello

On June 4, Tilleke & Gibbins and the Thai Listed Companies Association (TLCA) will cohost a webinar to offer insights to Thai investors on the impact of COVID-19 on investment into Cambodia, Laos...

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May 28, 2020

Tilleke & Gibbins Named Visionary Client Service Law Firm of the Year

Tilleke & Gibbins is proud to have been named Visionary Client Service Law Firm of the Year – Asia at the 2020 Counsels of the Year Awards, hosted by the Asian-Mena Counsel  In-House...

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April 16, 2020

Tilleke & Gibbins Nominated for Visionary Client Service Award

In-House Community, the well-respected publishing house behind Asian-Mena Counsel  magazine, has announced the shotlist for its 2020 Visionary Client Service Providers awards, naming Tilleke...

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February 17, 2020

Tilleke & Gibbins Shortlisted in 10 Categories in the Legal 500 Southeast Asia Awards 2020

Tilleke & Gibbins has been nominated in 10 categories in the recently announced shortlist for the Legal 500 Southeast Asia Awards 2020. This is the inaugural year for the awards, which aim to be...

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July 8, 2020

COVID-19 Resource Center

As the global COVID-19 situation develops, Tilleke & Gibbins is dedicated to ensuring that our clients remain up to date on the most important legal developments in Southeast Asia as they happen...

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June 24, 2020

COVID-19 Labor Law FAQ for Employers in Mainland Southeast Asia

Dino Santaniello, Dusita Khanijou, Jay Cohen, Kien Trung Trinh, Nada Songsasen, Pimvimol (June) Vipamaneerut, Ross Taylor, Saithong Rattana, Sochanmalisphoung Vannavuth

The COVID-19 pandemic has led to shutdowns, lockdowns, and quarantines around the world, forcing companies into drastic cost-cutting measures to offset severely diminished (or zero) revenue due to a...

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June 15, 2020

Southeast Asia’s IP Offices Respond to the COVID-19 Pandemic

Darani Vachanavuttivong, Dino Santaniello, Jay Cohen, Linh Thi Mai Nguyen, Rochmali Zultan , Sher Hann Chua, Sokmean Chea, Wongrat Ratanaprayul, Yuwadee Thean-ngarm

The intellectual property offices of Southeast Asia have implemented measures ranging from deadline extensions to expanded online services to cope with office closures and other issues brought about...

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May 5, 2020

Cambodia Broadens Tax Exemptions for Aviation and Tourism Sectors

David Mol, Jay Cohen, Nitikar Nith

On April 9, 2020, the Cambodian General Department of Taxation (GDT) issued an official notification to clarify and widen the scope of the tax relief measures granted by the Ministry of Economy and...

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April 23, 2020

Options for Employers in Cambodia During the COVID-19 Outbreak

Jay Cohen, Sochanmalisphoung Vannavuth

The tragic increase in COVID-19 cases worldwide has changed how we live and work the world over, and Cambodia has not escaped the severe business impact being seen elsewhere. As a result of these...

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