Legal Marketplace Analysis 2014

Our new Trade & Customs publication comprises a total of 334 practitioners from 184 firms in 36 countries who are considered leaders in this field of law.

In this section, we have highlighted four global firms and one boutique as leading players due to the high number of listings they receive. Sidley Austin once again dominates our research with world-leading practitioners from its DC, Geneva and Brussels offices; Baker & McKenzie, meanwhile, displays an authoritative global reach with ranked lawyers from 10 different offices. King & Spalding and White & Case are also preeminent in the market. Specialist firm Appleton Luff is strongly placed with leading lawyers listed in four jurisdictions.

We also select the most highly regarded individuals in the world, including the very best lawyers in the international trade centres of Brussels, Geneva and DC.

Who's Who Legal: Trade & Customs 2014
Most Highly Regarded Individuals
Lawyer Firm
Edwin Vermulst VVGB
Marco Bronckers VVGB
Jean-François Bellis Van Bael & Bellis
Laurent Ruessmann Fieldfisher
Folkert Graafsma Holman Fenwick Willan
Philippe De Baere Van Bael & Bellis
Paulette Vander Schueren Mayer Brown
Jasper Wauters King & Spalding
Brendan McGivern White & Case
Todd Friedbacher Sidley Austin
Scott Andersen Sidley Austin
Arthur Appleton Appleton Luff
Washington, DC
Gary Horlick Law Offices Of Gary N Horlick
Andrew Shoyer Sidley Austin
Neil Ellis Sidley Austin
Spencer Griffith Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld
Valerie Slater Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld
Mark Moran Steptoe & Johnson
Walter Spak White & Case
Charlene Barshefsky Wilmer Cutler Pickering Hale And Dorr
James Bacchus Greenberg Traurig
Terence Stewart Stewart And Stewart
Rest Of The World
Daniel Moulis Moulis Legal, Canberra
Ana Caetano Veirano, São Paulo
Renê Medrado Pinheiro Neto, São Paulo
Edmund Sim Appleton Luff, Singapore
Amelia Porges Law Offices Of Amelia Porges, Arlington
Jin Xiao King & Wood Mallesons, Beijing
Lingchen Pu Zhong Lun Law Firm, Beijing
Suhail Nathani Economics Law Practice, Mumbai
Erry Bundjamin Bundjamin & Partner, Jakarta
Brenda Swick McCarthy Tétrault, Toronto


Sidley Austin once again leads our research with 15 of its practitioners recognised, four of whom are among the most highly regarded individuals in the world. The Geneva office is home to five standout lawyers, including the “hugely talented” Todd Friedbacher. He is “globally renowned” for his World Trade Organization (WTO) expertise having represented clients in more than 30 disputes. Scott Andersen is a “prominent figure” in the legal market due to his former position as a legal adviser to the US Mission to the WTO. The “superb” Nicolas Lockhart has been involved in “numerous high-profile cases” where he acts for WTO members as complainants, respondents and third parties.

Nine experts from the firm’s Washington, DC, office feature, with Andrew Shoyer coming “highly recommended” by clients and peers. He chairs the firm’s international trade and disputes practice and is “one of the best in the country, if not the world” for advising on the implementation and enforcement of trade and investment agreements. The “exceptional” Neil Ellis is “the guy” for antitrust and trade regulation matters and is “particularly respected” for his involvement in complex and controversial anti-dumping and counterveiling duty cases. Brenda Jacobs provides strategic and legal advice on regulations, including the Trans-Pacific Partnership and free trade agreements, and is praised by clients for her “spot-on counsel and wonderful judgement”.

The “frighteningly intelligent” James Mendenhall is a former general counsel of the Office of the United States Trade Representative and boasts “almost unparalleled experience” of this field. Customs “guru” Richard Belanger is a “must for inclusion”, as is sanctions and exports control specialist Lisa Crosby. At the Brussel’s office, Arnoud Willems leads the firm’s EU trade and customs team and is “especially successful” in anti-dumping cases before the EU courts.

Baker & McKenzie achieves 10 listings across 10 different offices, which demonstrates the “very impressive” global reach of its expertise. In the Netherlands, Jasper Helder is “outstanding” on EU sanctions and export controls and clients value his “responsiveness and efficiency”. Caracas-based Enie Neri de Ross is a “seasoned” trade and competition practitioner and the “go-to lawyer” for those in need of counsel in this jurisdiction. At the Singapore office, Eugene Lim co-heads the firm’s Asia Pacific trade and commerce practice and is valued for his “exceptional guidance” on regional trade matters.



In the US, William Outman II is a “respected figure” at the Californian bar who is a “real favourite” of both foreign and domestic clients regarding US customs and border protection matters. The “eminent” Stuart Seidel at the Washington, DC, office spent over three decades at the US Customs Service and has a “simply fantastic knowledge” of customs valuations, classifications and country of origin issues. New York-based Robert Eisen is “notable” for his tax and trade expertise, especially regarding China-related transactions.

King & Spalding performs very strongly in our research with eight lawyers from three different offices selected. The Washington, DC office is a “hub of activity” with four individuals recognised, including chair of the firm’s international trade group Stephen Orava. He is “much admired” by his peers who hail him as a “point of reference” in the legal market for WTO regulations and disputes. The practice group’s founding partner Joseph Dorn is a “legendary figure” who stands out for his “political savvy, commercial awareness and deep legal understanding”.

The “very talented” Jasper Wauters is our most highly regarded individual at the Geneva bar.  He is a “world-class litigator” who also provides “outstanding counsel” to private and sovereign clients. Manager of the office Daniel Crosby has particular experience of the Middle East, Russia and states of the former Soviet Union and is also “the first port of call” for those with energy-related trade issues. In London, Iain MacVay is considered a “font of knowledge” on EU trade law.

White & Case is home to seven of those selected for inclusion this year, four of whom are based in Washington, DC. Walter Spak leads the firm’s international trade team and has spent over three decades practising in this area. According to peers there is “no aspect of trade law he does not know and no matter he cannot handle”. The “fantastic” David Bond is “one of the best” for unfair trade proceedings and responding to non-tariff barriers.

In Geneva, the “remarkable” Brendan McGivern heads the firm’s WTO practice and is widely acclaimed for the strength of his practice. Clients praise his “approachability, flexibility and business nous” and “would not hesitate to recommend him”. James Killick is a “star litigator” in the Brussels market and, at the Tokyo office, the “splendid” Osamu Umejima recently spent time working at the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry of the Japanese Government.

Specialist trade boutique Appleton Luff achieves six inclusions, with the “exceptional” Arthur Appleton coming very highly nominated. His “stellar practice” is split between international trade and arbitration law, and peers describe him as a “brilliant strategist” with “unsurpassed technical abilities”. Brussels-based David Luff is “in huge demand” as counsel and has been advising the government of the Ukraine in its WTO accession negotiations.

Singapore lawyer Edmund Sim is “very active” across the whole of the Asia-Pacific region. He is “frequently seen” on significant anti-dumping cases and is also “very strong” on customs issues. Roberto Rios Herrán is a “major player” in the Polish legal market and is sought after by energy and infrastructure clients due to his sector-specific knowledge of these industries. 


The highly sophisticated Brussels legal market has a wealth of first-class practitioners and firms recognised in this edition. Van Bael & Bellis is the best represented Belgian firm in our research with six of its lawyers singled out, including co-founding partner Jean-François Bellis. Described as a “dean of the Brussels bar”, he is praised for his “incredible litigation skills” and has represented numerous clients before the European Commission, the EU Courts and in national proceedings. Philippe De Baere is noted for his “prestigious practice” which is particularly focused on trade defence and he has been involved in many of the most important EU anti-dumping cases of recent years. Richard Luff is valued for his “solution-oriented approach” and has handled more than 150 anti-dumping cases for clients from around the globe.

A trio of “top individuals” from VVGB feature, with founding partner Edwin Vermulst recognised as our leading Brussels-based specialist. Hailed as a “real asset to his clients”, he is praised for his “sharp intellect” and “incredible track record”. Recent clients he has counselled include the World Federation of Sporting Goods Industry, the Ministry of Commerce of the People’s Republic of China (MOFCOM) and Suntech. “Trailblazer” Marco Bronckers became the first lawyer in private practice to represent a government in government-to-government litigation before a General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade panel in Geneva and continues to be at the “forefront of trade law”. The “fabulous” Natalie McNelis is also a “must for inclusion” according to those who have worked with her.

Folkert Graafsma of Holman Fenwick Willan is “internationally acclaimed” for his practice having been involved in many “landmark” EU and US cases over the past 20 years, including China solar panels, Indonesia biodiesel and India stainless steel wires cases.  The “very smart” Konstantinos Adamantopoulos has particular expertise in the telecommunications, energy, mining, aviation and construction sectors. The firm also has London-based Anthony Woolich included due to his “first-class know-how” in relation to sanctions.

Fieldfisher’s Brussels office is home to the “magnificent” Laurent Ruessmann who is hailed as “an authority” on international trade law. Clients praise his “creativity, commercial instinct and hands-on approach” and describe him as their “go-to guy”. Jochen Beck stands out for the “high-quality advice” he provides on regulatory issues under EU and member state legislations, WTO law and other international agreements.

The “formidable” Paulette Vander Schueren at Mayer Brown is considered to be “one of the finest practitioners in Belgium, if not the world”. She is considered “first choice” for advising on market access issues and compliance with WTO provisions. Nikolay Mizulin is “especially active” in guiding Russia and CIS countries on trade defence investigations and government trade policy matters.


Washington, DC has an extraordinary wealth of talent in this sector and is home to more lawyers in this publication than any other jurisdiction. Several firms and individuals are particularly notable in the market, including Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld which achieves six listings, two of whom feature in our list of most highly regarded practitioners. Spencer Griffith is lauded as a “masterful litigator” who provides “excellent strategic counsel”. His “enviable” client list includes the government of British Columbia and Samsung. The “wonderful” Valerie Slater is “one of the premier trade remedy practitioners in the US” and a “pleasure to work with” according to peers. Head of the firm’s international trade group is the “much admired” Hal Shapiro. He has served as a senior counsellor to the director of the national economic council at the White House and is a “towering figure” of the DC bar.

Cassidy Levy Kent performs very strongly with five of its Washington, DC lawyers selected alongside one Ottawa-based practitioner. “Leading light” Robert Cassidy Jr is a former general counsel of the Office of the US Trade Representative and is “simply stunning” at devising strategies for using trade law procedures. Sources agree that Charles Levy is a leading name in the DC legal market with a track record that includes acting as counsel to the House Foreign Affairs Subcommittee on Foreign Economic Policy and vice president of the Emergency Committee for American Trade. The “extremely skilled” John Greenwald is noted for his representation of clients in investigations in numerous jurisdictions including the US, Mexico, Brazil and Argentina. 

Six practitioners from Hogan Lovells feature, five of whom are prominent in the Washington, DC market. Director of the international trade and investment group Deen Kaplan is “very well versed” in government policy and disputes. Lewis Leibowitz has a “sterling practice” that encompasses trade law under domestic and international agreements, and Mark McConnell is “revered” for his many notable successes, such as his defence of the US Grains Council in the Chinese antidumping investigation of Distillers’ Dried Grains. In Belgium, Lourdes Catrain leads the firm’s European international trade and investment practice and is “highly proficient” in trade defence investigations.

Steptoe & Johnson also has five lawyers from its Washington, DC office selected, with Mark Moran held in particularly high esteem. He is “one of the most successful litigators on the East coast” and clients highlight his “thorough understanding of the sector” and “dazzling courtroom presence”. The “terrific” Susan Esserman chairs the firm’s international department and is described by peers as “incredibly bright” and “very creative”. Matthew Yeo is a “big name” for WTO matters and Beijing-based Eric Emerson is the “lawyer of choice” for US companies trading with China.

At Wilmer Cutler Pickering Hale and Dorr, former US Trade Representative Charlene Barshefsky is hailed is a “rainmaker” and is renowned for her “premier practice” that focuses on international business transactions, the structuring and negotiation of commercial agreements and the removal of trade and regulatory impediments. Co-managing partner Robert Novick offers “top-tier counsel” on the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement, and in Berlin the “tremendous” Stefan Ohlhoff co-leads the firm’s EU regulatory group. 

At his own firm, Gary Horlick is our most highly regarded practitioner in Washington, DC, and “undisputedly one of the leading figures for international trade law in the world”. He is a former head of the US Department of Commerce Import Administration where he was responsible for the administration of US anti-dumping and countervailing duty laws and his regulatory understanding is “beyond compare”. Clients “cannot rate him highly enough” and peers describe him as a “joy to work with” and a “pioneer” of this field of law.

At Greenberg Traurig the “sensational” James Bacchus is selected. He chairs the firm’s global practice and is known for the “flawless” strategic advice he provides to clients in relation to WTO rules. In the Netherlands, Erik de Bie is noted for his abilities in customs, VAT and excise duty.

Terence Stewart of Stewart and Stewart “brings real value” according to impressed clients who seek out his counsel on trade remedy cases. They picked out his “commitment and originality” in particular.


In Virginia at her own firm, Amelia Porges is “extremely well known” for her “world-class” WTO litigation practice and “marvellous awareness” issues relating to free trade agreements and market access.

At McCarthy Tétrault’s Toronto office, Brenda Swick is “one of the best in Canada” for competitive contracting law and trade agreements relating to government procurement. Head of the firm’s international trade and investment group John Boscariol is sought after for his counsel on compliance and enforcement, and Montreal-based Simon Potter is “one of the foremost litigators in the state”.

Daniel Moulis of Moulis Legal “wrote the book on international trade law” in Australia and has been involved in several “highly significant” WTO disputes, including the US Upland Cotton case and the Canada renewable energy/feed-in tariff programme.

Jin Xiao is one of three individuals from King & Wood Mallesons’ Beijing office recognised in this edition. He is “incredibly active” in representing the Chinese government in WTO disputes and advising it on international trade agreements. The “first-rate” Susan Ning heads the firm’s international and anti-trust and competition group and has been “instrumental” in developing the area of international trade law in China. Cheng Liu is a “favourite” with exporters and multinational companies responding to US, EU and Chinese antidumping, countervailing duty and safeguard investigations.

Lingchen Pu of Zhong Lun Law Firm is a “veteran of WTO disputes” and recently acted on behalf of MOFCOM in regards to a safeguard investigation initiated by the Egyptian government on textile products. Jianwei Liu is a “big name” for EU trade disputes and peers describe him as “incredibly well-informed”. 

Economics Law Practice has co-founder Suhail Nathani in Mumbai recognised. He is “noteworthy” for his involvement in some of the country’s “most prominent trade remedy cases” and is considered a “leading light” of the Indian bar. Rohan Shah is “top choice” for those seeking advice on tax and customs matters.

In Jakarta, Erry Bundjamin of Bundjamin & Partner is praised for his “attention to detail and responsiveness”, with peers describing him as “head and shoulders above others” in the Indonesian market.

Pinheiro Neto has two individuals from its São Paulo office recognised, with Renê Medrado achieving a particularly high number of nominations. He boasts “substantial experience” in trade remedy investigations and is “extremely familiar” with WTO matters. The “very attentive” Mauro Berenholc is noted for his abilities as a litigator, especially in relation to anti-dumping and customs cases.

At Veirano, Ana Caetano leads the firm’s international trade group and is a “major player” in the Brazilian market. Clients value her “exceptional ability” at understanding their business needs and describe her as “always being on the ball” in regards to the latest developments in international trade law.

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Nominees have been selected based upon comprehensive, independent survey work with both general counsel and private practice lawyers worldwide. Only specialists who have met independent international research criteria are listed.

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