Canada maintains an “Export Control List” which identifies specific goods and technology that are controlled for the purposes of export from Canada to other countries, regardless of their means of delivery (including electronic transfer or transmission of information, and the provision of technical or consulting services). Businesses that export products or technology out of Canada must be aware of the Export Control List and ensure that their products or technology are not subject to export controls.
Our lawyers regularly assist private sector clients in the interpretation and application of the Export Control List, and we provide assistance with applications for the necessary export permits.
Canada maintains comprehensive economic sanctions against a number of countries. Under these sanctions, businesses and their employees in Canada may be prohibited from conducting transactions with certain countries. Canada also maintains targeted sanctions against the governments of certain countries, designated terrorists and terrorist organizations, weapons proliferators, and drug traffickers. These lists change regularly. Our lawyers are on top of the ever changing geopolitical security landscape and the related legislative steps taken by the Government of Canada in response to such developments through the implementation and removal of economic sanctions.
We regularly assist both Canadian and international businesses, financial institutions, and individuals with internal investigations when “red flags” appear, and we provide advice on compliance in these areas. We have significant experience in the design and implementation of compliance programs, including policies, procedures, employee training, and internal control mechanisms. During the due diligence process for mergers and acquisitions, we have assisted numerous domestic and foreign businesses with compliance issues. Where beaches have occurred, we have worked closely with our clients in making voluntary disclosures and in engaging with the ensuing investigations conducted by the Royal Canadian Mounted Police and Global Affairs Canada.
Individuals and businesses trading with or investing in Cuba are prohibited by the Foreign Extraterritorial Measures Act (FEMA) from complying with the United States’ Cuban Assets Control Regulations and similar laws and regulations, or with any directives, instructions, intimations of policy or other communications relating to such measures from a person who is in a position to direct or influence the policies of the person in Canada. Such persons are also required to give notice of such measures, directives, instructions, intimations of policy or other communications. Failure to comply could result in fines and/or criminal indictment. In 2014, this law was invoked to prohibit persons from complying with certain “Buy America” provisions related to premises leased by the State of Alaska from the Canadian Prince Rupert Port Authority. We have assisted Canadian subsidiaries of U.S. companies, individuals, and other entities in addressing the difficult conflict of laws issues that arise from the contradictory application of this Canadian law and the American laws and regulations.
The Corruption of Foreign Public Officials Act (CFPOA) makes it a criminal offence in Canada for persons or companies to bribe foreign public officials to gain advantage in carrying out international business. In recent years, Canada has been pursuing increasingly aggressive enforcement activity to prosecute bribery. Our lawyers have significant experience in assisting with the development and implementation of comprehensive compliance programs intended to limit exposure to bribery and corruption, and we have experience with the representation of companies who have identified non-compliance incidents.