William Pellerin is a partner in the international trade group. He has extensive experience litigating and advising on international trade law matters and disputes and is one of the very few private practice lawyers in Canada to have argued before the WTO Appellate Body and dispute settlement panels.

William litigates trade remedy matters regularly; he has successfully acted as counsel before the CITT and CBSA in numerous trade remedy proceedings. William also advises clients with respect to customs compliance, export controls and economic sanctions and has a thorough understanding of international trade policy and government processes.

William is also co-lead of McMillan’s Sanctions Specialty niche. He advises numerous Fortune 500 companies on complex sanctions and export control matters. He is a sought-after commentator and speaker on trade and sanctions matters, and as such is frequently interviewed and cited by Canada’s leading media outlets.

As former Deputy Director, Trade Remedies and North America Trade with Global Affairs Canada, William oversaw international trade disputes and appeals and coordinated Canada’s response to such actions. In his prior role as counsel to the Government of Canada’s Trade Law Bureau, William represented Canada in its challenge to the United States Department of Commerce’s imposition of countervailing duties on softwood lumber products from Canada. He also appeared and successfully argued for Canada before the Appellate Body in 2019.



Representative Matters

WTO and Trade Remedy Matters

  • United States — Countervailing Measures on Softwood Lumber from Canada, DS533. Successfully represented the Government of Canada before WTO dispute settlement panel in relation to the U.S. imposition of countervailing duties on softwood lumber from Canada
  • United States — Countervailing Measures on Supercalendered Paper from Canada, DS505. Successfully represented the Government of Canada before WTO dispute settlement panel in relation to the U.S. imposition of countervailing duties on Supercalendered paper products from Canada. Subsequently represented the Government of Canada before the WTO Appellate Body on appeal by the United States of the panel’s decision
  • Crystalline Silicon Photovoltaic Cells Safeguard Measure, USA-CAN-2021-31-01. Policy lead for the Government of Canada in its appeal of U.S. imposition of safeguard tariff on Canadian imports of solar products
  • Fresh, Chilled, or Frozen Blueberries (Safeguard), Inv. No. 201-TA-077. As policy lead for the Government of Canada, coordinated Canada’s successful litigation effort in the United States International Trade Commission safeguard investigation on fresh and frozen blueberries
  • Acted for the Canadian producers of solar modules in the successful anti-dumping and countervailing investigation and inquiry before the Canada Border Services Agency and the Canadian International Trade Tribunal
  • Acted for the Canadian producers of silicon metal, steel plate, aluminium extrusions and unitized wall modules in various anti-dumping and countervailing complaints, investigations, inquiries and expiry reviews

Economic Sanctions Matters

  • Advised a leading global mining company in assessing and revising business relationships and contracts with entities owned in part by sanctioned individuals;
  • Advised a leading commodity trading company. Requested and successfully obtained sanctions permit authorization for the importation of Russian goods arising from Canada’s prohibition on the docking of certain vessels;
  • Advised a company in the fertilizer industry and provided advice on complex business restructuring activities arising from relationships with sanctioned entities;
  • Advised a leading Canadian manufacturer of medical equipment in respect of contractual obligations and seized bank payments;
  • Advised a leading petroleum producer in respect of advice on Canadian prohibitions on the import of oil products;
  • Advised a leading global automaker in respect of the application of Canadian sanctions to commercial and financial activities;
  • Advised a hedge fund in respect of the designation of the Russian Central Bank as a Schedule 1 designated entity by Canada and in relation to trading in Russian sovereign debt in the secondary market.

Speaking Engagements

The Adjudication of Trade Remedies Disputes by Canadian Courts and Tribunals: What is “Now” and What is “Next”? - The Canadian Council on International Law (CCIL) annual conference

November 3, 2023

Canada's Three-Pronged Approach to Forced & Child Labour: An Update on Mandatory Reporting, Import Bans, and CORE Investigations

October 5, 2023

Knowledge Group sanctions, Trade Challenges and Opportunities Amid the Wide-Ranging Economic Sanctions

June 20, 2023

IE Canada 2022 Fall International Trade Summit

November 29-30, 2022
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News


Media Mentions


Rankings & Recognitions

  • Recognized in the 2024 Canadian Legal Lexpert Directory as a Repeatedly Recommended Lawyer in the area of International Trade Regulation
  • Recognized by Chambers Canada (2024) as a leading lawyer in the area of International Trade / WTO
  • Recognized by Best Lawyers in Canada (2024) as a leading lawyer in the area of International Trade and Finance Law

Education & Admissions

2013
Called to the Ontario bar
2012
JDUniversity of Ottawa
2008
B. Comm (Honours Finance)University of Ottawa

Insights (33 Posts)View More

Featured Insight

Charging Forward on Tariffs: The Government of Canada Launches Consultations on Tariffs on Chinese Electric Vehicles

This move underscores the government's commitment to addressing a series of alleged unfair trade practices and protecting Canadian workers and EV supply chains.

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Jul 3, 2024
Featured Insight

Sanctions Enforcement Rising: Border Seizures and Forfeitures, Administrative Penalties and a New Reporting Obligation for Sanctions Evasion Offences

Changes to Canada’s sanctions regime under Bill C-59 will add reporting requirements for importers/exporters, create AMPs, and grant new CBSA seizure powers.

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Jun 13, 2024
Featured Insight

Careful what you wish for! Canada issues long-awaited “guidance” on economic sanctions

Global Affairs Canada has, for the first time, released guidance on the application of economic sanctions in Canada, including to non-Canadian persons.

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Mar 28, 2024
Featured Insight

Two-Year Anniversary of Russia’s Illegal Invasion of Ukraine: New Sanctions Designations and Expansion of Export Prohibitions

To coincide with the two-year anniversary of Russia's invasion of Ukraine, Canada announced new sanctions and financial reporting obligations.

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Feb 28, 2024
Featured Insight

Update on 2024 Mandatory Supply Chain Reporting Obligation: New Guidance and Mandatory Questionnaire

Canadian and international businesses must file their first annual report on forced labour and child labour in supply chains by May 31, 2024.

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Jan 16, 2024
Featured Insight

CETA, TCA, CPTPP and CUKFTA – The Web of Trade Agreements Between Canada and the UK

Canada and the UK will maintain a strong trade relationship and preferential market access through a complex and expansive web of trade agreements.

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Nov 15, 2023
Featured Insight

Sanctions Update: Countering Russian Evasion of Export Controls and New Sanctions Designations

"Export Enforcement Five", which includes Canada, has released new guidelines aimed at limiting Russian export controls and sanctions evasion.

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Oct 4, 2023
Featured Insight

Russian Telecoms Newest Target of Canadian Sanctions and Canada’s (non-)Approach to General Permits

Canada's sanctions regime target Russian telecom companies MTS and MegaFon, raising policy considerations surrounding enforcement and General Permits.

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Aug 16, 2023
Featured Insight

Canadian Ombudsperson for Responsible Enterprise (CORE) Launches Investigations in Mining and Apparel Sectors

CORE Investigates Nike Canada Corp and Dynasty Gold Corp, but Declines to Investigate GobiMin Inc.

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Aug 16, 2023
Featured Insight

Government of Canada Seeks Input on Updating Canada’s Anti-Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing Regime

The Government of Canada has launched public consultations on updating Canada's anti-money laundering and terrorist financing regime.

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Jun 21, 2023
Featured Insight

CBSA’s Proposal to Modernize the Valuation for Duty Regulations

CBSA's proposed amendments to modernize the Value for Duty Regulations alter the definition of "sold for export to Canada" and "purchaser in Canada".

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Jun 7, 2023
Featured Insight

Proposed Updates to Canada’s Anti-Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing Regime

Finance Canada's proposed changes relating to anti-money laundering and armoured car companies, mortgage lenders, and money service businesses.

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Jun 7, 2023
Featured Insight

McMillan LLP’s CUSMA Dispute Settlement Scoreboard

Overview and analysis of disputes under the Canada-United States-Mexico Agreement, including bi-national panel review, ISDS, and general dispute settlement

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Jun 5, 2023
Featured Insight

Prepare your business to comply with Canada’s new anti-slavery legislation

An in-person seminar aiming to discuss the scope of Bill S-211 and how this new legislation might affect businesses.

Details
June 1, 2023
Featured Insight

New Mandatory Reporting Requirement for Businesses: Canada’s Modern Anti-Slavery Bill Becomes Law

Canada imposes new reporting obligations on forced labour, and what it means for Canadian businesses.

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May 3, 2023
Featured Insight

Pursuing Ethical Supply Chains: ESG and Human Rights Principles Incorporated in Federal Procurement Policies

Contracting Policy Notice 2023-1 makes the Code of Conduct for Procurement mandatory for all federal procurements and introduces ESG-related responsibilities.

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May 1, 2023
Featured Insight

Caught in the Sanctions Crossfire: Canada’s Proposed New Control Test Has Broad Repercussions on Businesses with Any Nexus to Russia

Proposed "deemed ownership" test under Canadian sanctions laws and convergence of AML and sanctions regulation in Canada.

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Apr 26, 2023
Featured Insight

Canadian Businesses Should Prepare for New Mandatory Reporting on Supply Chains and Forced Labour

Canada prepares to impose new reporting obligations on forced labour, and what it means for Canadian businesses.

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Mar 14, 2023
Featured Insight

One Year On: Economic Sanctions Have Become a Primary Tool of Canadian Foreign Policy and New Russian Sanctions are Imposed

Canada continues to impose sanctions against additional countries, including Sri Lanka, Haiti, and Myanmar, and joins the G7 Enforcement Coordination Mechanism.

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Mar 1, 2023
Featured Insight

Let Them Roll: Dispute Settlement Panel Rules in Favour of Canada and Mexico on Automotive Rules of Origin and “Roll-Up” Method under CUSMA

Analysis of recent CUSMA panel decision on automotive rules of origin. Use of the roll-up method for core parts was in dispute between Canada, US and Mexico.

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Jan 24, 2023
Featured Insight

Sanctions Pivot: Canada Seeks Forfeiture of Russian-Owned Assets to Fund Reconstruction of Ukraine and Adds Oil Price-Cap Restrictions

Canada, in a first for G7 states, seeks seizure & forfeiture of sanctioned oligarch's assets for use in compensation & reconstruction of Ukraine.

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Dec 22, 2022
Featured Insight

Canada Embraces the Indo-Pacific: New Canadian Strategy Expands Opportunities for Two-way Trade and Investment

Canada announces new Indo-Pacific Strategy, applies to join Indo-Pacific Economic Framework, and what it all means for Canadian businesses.

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Nov 30, 2022
Featured Insight

Canadian Sanctions Revisited: More Russian and New Iranian Sanctions, Including Price Cap on Russian Oil

Canada continues to update its sanctions relating to Russia, Ukraine, and Iran. It will also implement a price cap on Russian oil as part of a G7 initiative.

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Oct 4, 2022
Featured Insight

Could Imported Apparel Start Costing 17% More? Canada Revising its Special Duties for Developing Countries

Finance Canada has opened consultations on proposed changes to Canada's preferential tariff programs, with important implications for the apparel industry.

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Sep 9, 2022
Featured Insight

Canada Clamps Down on Services Provided to Russia

A description of the June 6, 2022 Canadian sanctions against Russia.

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Jun 13, 2022
Featured Insight

Canada Poised to Increase Regulation of Forced Labour in Supply Chains

Developments in Canadian regulation of forced labour in supply chains and their potential impacts on Canadian businesses

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Jun 7, 2022
Featured Insight

Canada Expands Sanctions on Russia and Proposes Broad Legislative Changes to its Sanctions Regime

An overview of two further rounds of Canadian sanctions against Russia as well as amendments that would strengthen Canada’s sanctions regime.

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Jun 1, 2022
Featured Insight

Budget 2022 Amends Legislation to Tackle Unfairly Traded Imports

Changes announced in Budget 2022 make it easier for Canadian producers to tackle unfairly traded imports.

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Apr 13, 2022
Featured Insight

Canada Further Expands its Sanctions Regime Against Russia

An update on Canada’s sanctions measures in response to military actions taken by Russia against Ukraine.

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Mar 29, 2022
Featured Insight

Canada Ratchets Up its Sanctions in Response to the Russia-Ukraine Crisis

An update on Canada’s sanctions measures in response to military actions taken by Russia against Ukraine.

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Mar 4, 2022
Featured Insight

Combatting Forced Labour in Supply Chains from a Canadian Customs Perspective

Global supply chains are inordinately complex. The focus is not solely on disruptions; forced labour is increasingly in the spotlight.

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Dec 22, 2021
Featured Insight

Canada Enters Into Free Trade Negotiations with the Association of Southeast Asian Nations

Canada recently announced it will proceed with free trade agreement negotiations with ASEAN member countries, expanding opportunity for trade and investment.

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Nov 30, 2021
Featured Insight

China’s Arduous Path to CPTPP Accession – A Myriad of Obstacles with an Improbable Outcome

On September 16, 2021, China submitted its request to accede to the Comprehensive and Progressive Trans-Pacific Partnership (“CPTPP”).

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Oct 13, 2021

Deals & Cases (3 Posts)

Featured Insight

ASKO Holding’s wholly owned subsidiary, Başak Traktör Tarim Ziraat Ve Iş Makinalari Sanayi Ticaret A.Ş, acquires approximately 96.7% of the issued and outstanding common shares of Buhler Industries Inc.

On December 28, 2023, Başak Traktör Tarim Ziraat Ve Iş Makinalari Sanayi Ticaret A.Ş, a wholly owned subsidiary of ASKO Holding completed its acquisition of all the common shares of Buhler Industries Inc. owned by Combine Factory Rostselmash Ltd., representing 96.7% of the issued and outstanding Shares of the Company.

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Dec 28, 2023
Featured Insight

McMillan helps client obtain urgent relief from flood of unfairly traded Chinese energy tubular products

Tenaris Canada was engaged in two anti-dumping and countervailing duty re-investigations before the Canada Border Services Agency (“CBSA”).

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Mar 17, 2023
Featured Insight

LP2 2022 RI: line pipe 2 Canada Border Services Agency (“CBSA”) concludes re-investigation

On December 23, 2022, Canada Border Services Agency (“CBSA”) concluded its re-investigation of the normal values and export prices of line pipe originating in or exported from South Korea.

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Dec 23, 2022