Archive for the ‘International trade’ Category

2014 Canadian International Law Students Conference

January 28, 2014


I am privileged to be the keynote speaker at the upcoming  2014 Canadian International Law Students Conference, jointly presented by the International Law Society of University of Toronto Faculty of Law and Osgoode Hall Law School on Saturday, 1 February 2014 from 9:30 AM to 6:00 PM (EST). Here are the event details:

Event Details

The CILSC provides a forum for law students, academics, practitioners, and leaders in the field to exchange ideas about Canada’s international and domestic performance in public and private international law. Speakers will also touch on how to begin exploring a career in this field. For speaker bios visit

The conference has a history of attracting prominent speakers involved in the practice and study of international law. This year we are featuring speakers across five panels:

Panel 1: Litigating Foreign Cases in Canadian Courts
Panel 2: International Intellectual Property Law
Panel 3: Careers in Public International Law
Panel 4: Careers in Private International Law
Panel 5: Law and the Syrian Crisis


9:30-9:45 Introductions
9:45-11:00: Substantive panel 1 (Public)
11:15-12:30: Substantive panel 2 (Private)
12:30-1:30: Lunch
1:30-2:30: Concurrent Career Panels
2:45-4:00 Substantive Panel (Syria)
4:00-5:30 Reception

Ticket Information:

Online Student Ticket: $12.00

In-person Student Ticket: $10.00

For in-person tickets, Osgoode students please contact; U of T students please contact or These tickets will be available at the door.

Professional Tickets: $75.00

Current members of the bar who attend the conference are eligible for up to 3.75 hours of CPD credits. We will provide holders of Professional Tickets materials to be submitted to the law society for CPD credits.

If you’re interested in a career in international law or want to hear about the latest international law developments from leading academics and practitioners , this is a must-attend program.

PCA Tribunal ‘Benchslaps’ Ecuador in Ongoing Chevron-Lago Agrio Dispute

February 8, 2013


An interesting development in the Lago Agrio/Chevron litigation battle , which was the subject of my  Guest Post: Comments on the Lago Agrio Plaintiffs Enforcement Action in Canada at Ted Folkman’s Letters Blogatory.

Via the Juicio Crudo Blog (original in Spanish):

 An international arbitration court yesterday issued a ruling in which it concludes that the Republic of Ecuador has violated previous interim awards of the same court authorized under international law and a treaty between the United States and Ecuador to not attempt to prevent the execution of a sentence of 19,000 million against Chevron Corp. (NYSE: CVX). In previous decisions, the court warned that if the arbitration Chevron ended imposing “any loss arising from the implementation (of the judgment) would be losses for which (the Republic) would be responsible (with Chevron) under international law.”

Convened under the authority of the Bilateral Investment Treaty (BIT, according to its acronym in English) between the United States and Ecuador, and administered by the Permanent Court of Arbitration at The Hague, the tribunal found that Ecuador breached previous court rulings and ordered to explain why the Republic should not be ordered to pay compensation to Chevron for all damages resulting from attempts by plaintiffs to enforce a judgment arising out of an environmental lawsuit against the company in Lago Agrio, Ecuador. (more…)

Thiago B. Jardim Oliveira on The Authority of Domestic Courts in Adjudicating International Investment Disputes

September 28, 2012

Thiago B. Jardim Oliveira (University of Geneva – Department of Public International Law; Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies (HEI)) has posted a working paper entitled “The Authority of Domestic Courts in Adjudicating International Investment Disputes: Beyond the Distinction between Treaty and Contract Claims”. The abstract reads:

While it is widely acknowledged that international tribunals may, depending on their jurisdictional entitlements, entertain treaty claims as well as claims arising out of breaches of contract, the exercise of jurisdiction by domestic courts has generally been deemed to be limited to matters of national law. What is more, domestic adjudication has generally been considered without consequence for the outcome of a number of international proceedings. However, is deference to international dispute settlement mechanisms really compatible with dispute settlement clauses contained in investment treaties and contractual agreements that foresee a role to be played by domestic courts? The answer attempted by this paper is in the negative. On the one hand, the identity of a legal dispute within the jurisdiction of different forums is not dependent on the cause of action that might be invoked, nor is the distinction between contract claims and treaty claims one that necessarily justifies the existence of two wholly separate layers of legal obligations. This may be illustrated through an assessment of how international jurisdictional entitlements exist and interact with specific dispute settlement clauses contained in contracts and treaties. On the other hand, where a distinction based on the causes of action might exist, municipal courts that deal strictly with matters of domestic law ought not to be deprived of influence on the outcome of international proceedings. In this regard, an analysis of the consequences for international tribunals of adjudication by municipal courts over derivative claims and investment disputes in general will be of avail.

Download a copy of the working paper at SSRN here.



Ontario Bar Association-International Law Section: Announcement and Upcoming Programs

September 7, 2012

i will drink to that (opps wrong bar)

I am pleased to announce that I am the new Chair of the Ontario Bar Association (OBA) – International Law Section.

I look forward to working with my colleague and Vice-Chair, Orlando Silva (Commercial Counsel – Specializing in Export Controls, Customs and International Trade Matters at Research in Motion) and my fellow Section Executives in keeping OBA members updated on current developments in various areas of international law.

Membership in the OBA International Law Section is open to any members of the Canadian Bar Association. If you want to find out more about the OBA International Law Section, please follow this link.

The OBA International Law Section enlists international law experts as speakers to provide timely and authoritative continuing legal education programs (many of which are accredited by the Law Society of Upper Canada). The following programs in September 2012 may be of particular interest:

International Law: The Controlled Goods Program Enhanced Security Strategy:“A Higher Fence around a Smaller Yard”

|Thursday, September 13, 2012 

Date: Thursday, September 13, 2012
Agenda: 12:00 pm Registration & Lunch 12:30 pm – 2:00 pm Program followed by Q & A
Location: Twenty Toronto Street Conferences and Events (OBA Conference Centre) 20 Toronto Street, 2nd Floor | Toronto, ON | M5C 2B8
1.5 Substantive Hours 0 Professionalism Hours Note: New members may apply any program that contains a minimum of 0.5 Professionalism Hours toward the annual CPD requirement.


Transfer Pricing in the NAFTA Zone – The Interaction of Income Tax and Customs Principles

|Wednesday, September 19 

Date: Wednesday, September 19, 2012
Agenda: 12:00 pm Registration & Lunch 12:30 pm – 2:00 pm Program followed by Q & A
Location: Twenty Toronto Street Conferences and Events (OBA Conference Centre) 20 Toronto Street, 2nd Floor | Toronto, ON | M5C 2B8
1.5 Substantive Hours 0 Professionalism Hours Note: New members may apply any program that contains a minimum of 0.5 Professionalism Hours toward the annual CPD requirement.


2012 U.S. Presidential Election-Impact on International Law and International Lawyers

| Wednesday, September 12

Date: Wednesday, September 12, 2012
Agenda: 11:30 am Annual Meeting and Election of ILS Officers and Council for 2012-2013 12:30 pm – Program
Location: The Detroit Yacht Club One Riverbank Road Belle Isle, Detroit MI 48207-4377
1 Substantive Hours 0 Professionalism Hours Note: New members may apply any program that contains a minimum of 0.5 Professionalism Hours toward the annual CPD requirement.

‘This is a joint program with the Ontario Bar Association’s International Law Section and the Michigan State Bar. Three panelists address the state of the law under the current Obama Administration and potential changes in a 2nd Obama or 1st Romney Administration respecting Immigration, International Trade and the U.S. FCPA, U.K. Bribery Act and Money Laundering enforcement. Also, we have invited the Executive Director of the State Bar of Michigan to address our section. Spend the afternoon with your State Bar of Michigan International Law Section colleagues, highly qualified presenters, business and government leaders active in international matters.

The program is free. RSVP by contacting me at

Where Are All The Canadian International Law Blogs?

January 3, 2011

Steve Matthews and Jordan Furlong of Stem Legal and their staff at have created an impressive repository of Canadian law blogs ( which I also refer to as “blawgs”) and the list continues to grow. Since a considerable amount of my writing is devoted to international litigation and arbitration, I have noticed lately that with few exceptions, the state of the Canadian international law blawgosphere is  anemic. At first, I couldn’t find a category on the main page, but managed to find 3 blogs under the category:  International & Cross-Border Law Blogs:

  • The Cross-Border Biotech BlogBiotechnology, Health and Business in Canada, the United States and Worldwide is c0-edited by Jeremy Grushcow, a corporate lawyer at Ogilvy Renault LLP who holds a Ph.D. in Molecular Genetics and Cell Biology, and is a member of the Bar in Ontario, New York and Illinois, and Audrey Fried-Grushcow a  U.S.-trained lawyer and mediator, along with a  number of firm members that contribute regularly.
  • Legal FrontiersMcGill’s Blog on International Law, an initiative of the McGill Faculty of Law, is “a forum where students can develop and improve their research and writing skills while contributing to international legal discourse in English and French. The project is interdisciplinary with contributors exploring a wide variety of international issue areas.” Blogging duties are shared among Yeniva Massaquoi– Contributor-in-Chief; Martin Hétu-Executive Contributor; Andrew Cleland-Interim Executive Contributor; Nafay Choudhury-Interim Executive Contributor and a rotating staff that resembles a traditional law review editorial board.
  • Altro & Associates Blog-hosted by the boutique law firm of Altro & Associates, LLP, with offices in Montreal, Toronto, Calgary, Phoenix, Ft. Lauderdale, Sarasota and Naples, which specializes in ” sophisticated cross border tax, estate planning and real estate legal services to high net worth individuals.” David A. Altro is the firm’s managing partner Altro & Associates, LLP.

If you include the Trial Warrior Blog, that makes for a grand total of four international law blogs in Canada. That’s really lame. I used to follow a law blog (now defunct) called Renvoi: Lex Situs Conflictus, authored by Seva Batkin, now with the Vancouver, BC law firm Clark Wilson LLP. Maybe Seva will convince his colleagues to bring Renvoi back (a conflict of laws joke).

Anywho, I hereby throw down the guantlet and challenge my fellow Canadian international litigators and arbitrators to start their own personal or firm blogs dedicated to international law from a uniquely Canadian perspective. Let’s make 2011 “The Year of  the Canadian International Blawg“.

If any readers come across any new or interesting Canadian law blogs that include international or transnational law issues, send me an email.


The Trial Warrior

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