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Jacqueline Rotondi

Jacqueline Rotondi practices commercial, regulatory, competition and international trade law as a member of Baker McKenzie's Global International Commercial and Trade Groups.

Baker McKenzie’s Sanctions Blog published the alert titled Canada Announces Additional Sanctions in Response to Theft of Ukrainian Cultural Objects and Seizes Russian Cargo Aircraft on 16 June 2023. Read the article via the link here. Please also visit our Sanctions Blog for the most recent updates.  

Consumers and investors alike are increasingly shifting their focus towards both “green” products and investments in sustainable businesses and those with aspirational environmental and climate goals. Since environmental and sustainability claims have become ever more powerful marketing tools, they are also increasingly vulnerable to complaints of “greenwashing” — the practice of overstating the environmental characteristics or benefits of a company or a product.

On 27 May 2023 the Canada Border Services Agency introduced amendments to the Valuation for Duty Regulations, which will alter existing Canadian customs valuation rules. The Amendments intend to clarify the “sale” used to establish the value for duty under the transaction value method for all goods imported into Canada. Effectively, the Amendments propose a “last sale” approach to customs valuation, which has the potential to increase the declared value for duty of imported goods, directly increasing duties and taxes owing, and indirectly increasing the cost of doing business in Canada.

The Government of Canada recently introduced Part 1 of the budget implementation bill, which completed its second reading before the House of Commons and has been referred to the Standing Committee on Finance. The Bill proposes novel amendments, including “deemed ownership” provisions to the Special Economic Measures Act and the Justice for Victims of Corrupt Foreign Officials Act and it demonstrates that the Government intends to rely on existing anti-money laundering enforcement regimes to eliminate sanctions circumvention and enforce sanctions compliance. Additionally, the Bill seeks to expand the Government’s authority to prohibit activities with specific persons under the SEMA.

Recently, through its investigation into the retail pricing practices of a regional Canadian furniture retailer, the Competition Bureau of Canada has expanded the list of potentially problematic pricing claims to now include “urgency cues”, i.e., the use of marketing tactics to increase a consumer’s perception of having to act immediately and/or to elicit a “fear of missing out.”

The Canada Border Services Agency announced anticipated annual updates to the Customs Tariff and its trade verification priorities. It has also announced the implementation date for CARM Release 2 and typical administrative and statutory trade remedy proceedings. In addition to these developments, it is possible that in 2023, Canada may implement its proposed amendments to the Valuation for Duty Regulations, continue to scrutinize the apparel industry, and apply enhanced scrutiny of imports and exports to determine whether goods were manufactured by forced or child labor or are at high risk for sanctions circumvention.