Contributing Lawyers


Cyndee Todgham Cherniak

United States

Susan Kohn Ross


Andrew Hudson

ITAR Flashback

Trade lawyers blog has been following a series of cases where Canadian companies in the defense industry are facing human rights complaints under Canadian law for compliance with the U.S International Traffic in Arms Regulations (ITARs). 

This reminds me of a situation from the early 1980s.  In the early 1980s, the United States took measures under the U.S. Export Administration Regulations (EAR) to prevent trade with the Soviet Union that would support the construction of an oil pipeline.  Similar to the current ITARs, the EARs applied not only to American companies, but also to foreign subsidiaries of American companies.

The case of Companie Eurpeenne des Petroles S.A. v. Sensor Nederland B.V. involved a commercial dispute.  In this case, the defendant failed to supply certain goods to the plaintaiff that it had agreed to provide under a contract.  The defense offered was that the company could not fulfill its obligations due to the EAR restrictions.  The Court rejected this defence on the grounds that EARs violated international law because of the extra-territorial effects.

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