IPBA 2021

Trade & Sustainability & Supply Chains – Where do Lawyers fit in?

Organised by: International Trade Commitee

Abstract:
Trade has over the decades become a life-line to socio-economic growth and also wealth creation. It has seen the world become smaller even as global trade grew. Yet, with the increased focus on sustainability in the last half a decade, has or will global trade take a hit? Should it take a hit? On this, much has been said that the sustainability agenda taking priority with the consequence that policies might be structured in manners to impact upon trade. However, quite on the contrary, sustainability and trade are not mutually exclusive. Trade has a huge role to play in the sustainability growth. With this, a clear convergence is discernible. What are these? How are countries structuring policies to ensure the convergence plays out? What rules or regulations have to change? How are corporates working through processes to implement sustainable practices in trade, and how can they act as drivers through the value-chain to push or drag along the supply chain in this journey? Where do we as lawyers fit in? How do we identify issues of concern and assist clients in undertaking their continued trade whilst meeting the sustainability goals? How too do governments, the corporates and us as lawyers deal with curve balls, such as the pandemic (now endemic) in managing the changing world?

This is a session that will not look at issue esoterically, but take a practical approach and discuss issues from ground level. This is a must attend session whether or not your are a trade lawyer. Corporate lawyers in particular must understand the narrative so that they can better advice clients. We will look at issues from a multi-jurisdictional perspective.

Moderator

Kala Anandarajah
Partner
, Rajah Tann Singapore LLP
Singapore

Kala Anandarajah heads the Competition & Antitrust and Trade Practice and leads the Corporate Governance Practice. Always a forerunner in niche areas of the law, her key area of practice is Competition and Trade, areas which she has been involved in from inception. On Trade Law, Anandarajah has been involved in advising multinational corporations on trade agreements between governments, handled export and import permit applications and clearances involving strategic and various other regulated and prohibited goods, advises extensively on strategic and controlled goods, advised and assisted with voluntary disclosure programmes, dealt with product recall matters, advised and drafted warehousing and other logistics agreements and more. She also advises regularly on anti-dumping matters, and further has had to advised on the TPP, AEC and other trade treaties.

She is experienced in managing the advisory process in multiple stakeholder scenarios where the deliverables will have significant impact on trade. Additionally, Anandarajah has also conducted extensive training on competition policy, WTO and FTA and other trade related issues across ASEAN countries for regulators to enhance trade understanding, including in relation to working with ITIS and other bodies in Lao, Cambodia and Vietnam, amongst other countries. She advises multinational corporations plus local companies across the region. She is perhaps the only Singapore lawyer cited as a leading Trade lawyer by international legal ranking journals. The practice she leads has recently been cited as a Band 1 practice for South East Asia Trade / WTO by Chambers Asia Pacific

Speakers

Paolo Vergano
Partner
, FratiniVergano

Mr. Paolo R. Vergano is a partner at FratiniVergano – European Lawyers in Brussels, Belgium and Singapore (www.fratinivergano.eu).

His practice focuses on international trade law (WTO, EU and ASEAN law, dispute settlement and trade negotiation in the areas of agriculture, services and non-tariff measures, such as sanitary and phytosanitary measures and technical barriers to trade). Mr. Vergano has extensive experience in advising Governments and private parties on WTO matters and multilateral/regional/bilateral trade negotiations. He has actively participated in eight separate WTO dispute settlement proceedings and in countless EU proceedings (anti-dumping and countervailing duty investigations, duty suspension applications, TRQ establishment, etc.). He has been a legal advisor to the ASEAN Secretariat since 2007 and to the CEFTA Secretariat since 2015.

Prior to co-founding FratiniVergano in 2007, he worked in the international trade departments of law firms in both Washington, DC and Brussels, Belgium and with the External Economic Relations (REX) Committee of the European Parliament. Mr. Vergano is admitted in Belgium and is a member of the Brussels’ bar (A list) and of the IPBA, of which he is a former Chair of the International Trade Committee.

Mr. Vergano is a graduate of the Faculty of Law of the University of Torino, Italy (1995), received a Diplôme Supérieur de Droit Comparé at the Faculté Internationale de Droit Comparé in Strasbourg, France (1996) and holds a Master’s degree in International Business and Trade Law from the University of Fordham School of Law in New York, United States (1997). He teaches international trade law at the World Trade Institute in Bern, Switzerland since 2002, and international trade and food law at the LUISS University in Rome, Italy since 2017, and is a frequent lecturer and author on issues of WTO, EU and ASEAN law.

Since 2009, he is the Editor of FratiniVergano’s fortnightly publication Trade Perspectives©, (http://www.fratinivergano.eu/en/trade-perspectives/), regularly providing readers with a set of recent international trade developments of particular commercial and regulatory interest. Since 2011, Mr. Vergano is also on the Editorial Board of the Global Trade and Customs Journal.

Corey Norton
Vice President for Supply Chain Legality
, WWF

Corey L. Norton is Vice President for Supply Chain Legality at the World Wildlife Fund in Washington, D.C. He was previously in-house counsel for a large multinational working on market access and supply chain management issues. He also represented global clients on these and numerous other international trade issues in large global law firms. He is currently the IPBA’s Membership Committee Chair and was previously Chair of the International Trade Committee.

Tracey Epps
Trade Law Consultant
, Chapman Tripp

Tracey is a Trade Law Consultant at Chapman Tripp in Wellington, New Zealand. She regularly advises government and private sector clients on all aspects of international trade and investment law. She was previously a senior advisor in the New Zealand Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFAT) Legal Division where she worked on FTA negotiations, including as legal counsel in the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) negotiations.  She also advised on all aspects of trade and investment law, including trade in goods and services, and WTO disputes. Tracey has authored and edited a number of books and articles in the field of international economic law.

TD Satish
Lawyer
, Independent

Satish has more than a decade’s experience in handling international trade law matters such as issues relating to antidumping duties, countervailing duties, safeguard measures, Foreign Trade Policies and Free Trade Agreements.

Over the past 13 years, Satish has worked with firms specializing in international trade like Lakshmikumaran & Sridharan and Sarvada Legal, gaining rich experience in wide array of matters relating to international trade including disputes before the WTO, the United States Department of Commerce, Indian trade remedy authority, etc. During this time, Satish has advised many foreign multinationals, importers and user industries comprising of both multinationals as well as small & medium sized enterprises and Indian domestic industry, in trade remedy matters.

In addition, Satish possesses litigation experience in indirect tax matters pertaining to anti-dumping laws, indirect taxes and classification matters and has appeared before the adjudicating authorities, tax tribunals and writ courts in India.

Satish holds a bachelor’s degree in commerce, bachelor’s degree in law and is licensed to practice law in India.

Jack Chor
Partner
, Christopher & LeeOng

Jack specialises in project development and financing. He is recognised by IFLR1000 as a Highly Regarded Lawyer for both Project Development and Banking, rated by Legal 500 as a Next Generation Partner for Projects & Energy and is also ranked by Chambers and Partners as Up and Coming for Projects, Infrastructure and Energy.

Jack has significant experience advising on the development and financing of infrastructure projects. He has a keen interest in the energy sector and has advised on an extensive range of renewable energy matters. Jack also has extensive experience advising lenders and borrowers on a variety of financing transactions, including acquisition financing, project financing, trade financing, alternative financing, derivatives and bonds/Sukuk issuances. He has also advised on mergers & acquisitions involving project assets.

Sustainability and ESG issues are also areas in which Jack has an interest. He has been involved in many new and renewable energy projects and is currently coordinating the firm’s Sustainability Practice.