When international trade disputes arise, foreign and domestic governments and private and public companies come to Blakes for advice and resolution. Clients appreciate our multi-pronged approach, which combines strategic, diplomatic and political solutions with traditional dispute resolution techniques. In every instance, we evaluate the merits of each method based on our clients’ goals.
Blakes International Trade lawyers are industry leaders who have successfully represented clients in disputes arising under the World Trade Organization (WTO), North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), a variety of bilateral and international trade and investment agreements and treaties, and in WTO retaliation proceedings.
Clients have sought our representation in disputes involving a wide variety of matters, including claims related to customs and import controls, sanctions and export controls, treaty interpretation, government procurement, trade remedies, and WTO litigation.
Our team is often called upon to provide proactive advice, including evaluation of the applicability of international trade agreements. We conduct pre-investigation audits and recommend strategies designed to limit the risk of trade litigation and minimize liability should litigation arise.
Blakes litigators represent clients at all levels of courts throughout Canada and before administrative bodies. We are frequently retained to represent clients at complaint proceedings before the Canada Border Services Agency, the Canadian International Trade Tribunal (CITT) and NAFTA panels; in public interest investigations; before ad hoc tribunals; at expiry reviews; in enforcement and safeguard proceedings; and on antidumping and subsidy matters.
- Advised a company engaged in the production, processing and development of neo powders, rare earths, zirconium-based engineered materials on the WTO complaint against Chinese export restrictions of certain raw materials.
- Assisted one of the largest food group companies in Canada with a CITT review of a customs advance ruling and the subsequent Federal Court of Appeal judicial review.
- Represented a major U.S.-based manufacturer of roofing systems in all phases of a dumping investigation involving polyiso insulation boards from the U.S., which resulted in a "no injury" finding (Polyiso Insulation Board Inquiry No. NQ-2009-005; Preliminary Injury Inquiry No. PI-2009-004).
- Advised a global leader in aerospace, and interfacing with the Canadian Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade on their behalf, regarding the Canadian government's third-party participation in two WTO disputes.
- Represented the United States Trade Representative (USTR) as respondent in a judicial review before the Federal Court of Appeal brought by the applicants to question the decision of the Canadian International Trade Tribunal in an antidumping and subsidy case where the tribunal held, in favour of the USTR, that there was no injury to the applicants.
- Advised one of the largest power generators in North America on the implications of a WTO dispute on the utility’s intended procurement of two additional nuclear power plants at its existing nuclear facility.