The formidable and well-versed international trade practice of Sayenko Kharenko is considered the most experienced on the market, acting across all types of trade defense remedies both in Ukraine and abroad, and possesses unique expertise of WTO dispute settlement procedure, different regulatory issues related to export control, products safety, protection of consumers and sanctions work. The broad portfolio involves representing both domestic producers protecting the Ukrainian market and foreign producers trying to gain an individual approach in the course of proceedings, customers, importers, associations. The practice team represented the interests of LLC Ascania-Flora in a safeguard investigation related to the import of fresh cut roses notwithstanding the country of origin and export; represented Zhejiang Baokang Wheel Manufacture Co., Ltd. in anti-dumping investigation related to imports into Ukraine of aluminum wheel disks with origin in China and Russia. As for international markets, the firm represents the interests of PJSC Manufacturing Association Stalkanat-Silur in an anti-dumping investigation related to imports into the USA of prestressed concrete steel strand with origin, among others, from Ukraine. This past year the firm also extended the number of investigations related to imports into the Eurasian Economic Union to its trade remedies caseload. The team is at the forefront of representations in sunset and interim reviews as well as in anti-circumvention investigations. The WTO practice acted on behalf of companies of the DF Group in WTO arbitration proceedings to identify the reasonable period of implementation in DS493. Another substantial part of the practice is distribution and agency agreements, development of the franchising chain and trade compliance (technical regulations, ecological standards, sanctions). In a recent highlight the firm is instructed on a consistent basis for law product safety and product liability requirements. The robust practice group is led by well-rounded and reputed Anzhela Makhinova, with a key contribution from Victoria Mykuliak and Tetyana Tanchyn. Visible practitioner Ivan Baranenko left the firm for education abroad.
Ilyashev & Partners boosted its trade remedies practice, setting important precedents, and expanded its advisory on customs and export control, trade sanctions and sensitive political restrictions, preference agreements and rules of origin. The firm is increasingly sought for its policy-making and GR competence. The international trade practice is highly proficient in representing national producers in trade investigations, and is present in the majority of recent proceedings. For example, the team defended the interests of Karpatnaftochim in safeguard investigations against imports of caustic soda and polymeric materials regardless of the country of origin and export in Ukraine; achieved imposition of preliminary anti-dumping duty in the course of representing the interests of Druzhkovka Hardware Plant regarding the import of bolts from China; acts for a number of producers of cement in anti-dumping investigation related to the import of cement products originating from Turkey; handled representation of PJSC Odeskabel and Yuzhcable Works PJSC in the safeguard investigation against the import of wires to the territory of Ukraine. Being mandated by the Ukrainian state to represent its interests in the claim by the EU estimated at USD 1.3 billion within the framework of the EU — Ukraine Association Agreement regarding the moratorium on exporting round wood, the team reached a favorable outcome in December 2020. The practice enhanced trade litigation, sanctions, as well as trade policy advice and GR. In particular, the firm developed and promoted a draft law on changes to the Customs Code of Ukraine regarding temporary measures to defend national interests. Olena Omelchenko is acclaimed for her proficiency and deep understanding of trade policy. Oleksiy Gorbatiuk is a key team member with a strong practical background.
Asters proliferated its trade remedies profile, capturing new significant representations with a sharp focus on defense in trade investigations. The robust practice grabbed an impressive following of foreign producers and importers, and is present in the majority of investigations initiated by Ukraine. For example, the firm defended leading foreign chemical producers and Ukrainian importers in safeguard investigations regarding imports into Ukraine of mineral fertilizers with nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium, and nitrogen fertilizers (in particular: ammonium nitrate, urea and mixtures of urea and ammonium) regardless of the country of origin and export. The team represented LLC DEPS TELECOM, a leading importer of wires into Ukraine, and EURASIA TELECOM Sp. z o.o., one of the largest EU exporters to Ukraine, in a safeguard investigation regarding imports of wires to Ukraine. Other ongoing anti-dumping investigations, among others, include imports of cement originating from the Republic of Turkey, import of plywood originating from the Republic of Belarus, turn-tilt mechanisms for window and balcony door units originating in the Republic of Turkey. Notably, the firm advises embassies and trade missions in Ukraine. The litigation aspects of trade defense are among recent areas of growth. The firm represented EuroChem in a court dispute regarding the decision by the Interdepartmental Commission on International Trade to renew anti-dumping measures applied to imports of ammonium nitrate originating from the Russian Federation. The practice is co-led by two partners — Alexey Pustovit (fronts practice development function and benefits from his competition background) and GlebBialyi, who is historically focused on representing clients from chemical and fertilizers industries, and metallurgy, and revealed recent involvement in trade litigation. The market praises the high standards of work done by Anton Sintsov. This past year the team was strengthened with the arrival of Dr. Olesia Kryvetska as a counsel, noted for her strong academic background.
The international trade practice of AEQUO exhibits a considerable offering spread across trade remedies, complex customs issues and export controls. The firm also houses in-depth specialization in international sanctions and trade restrictive measures, also assisting with product compliance and recall. The firm continues to expand its trade investigations portfolio, focusing on representation of importers. In a recent highlight the team represented the interests of the China Chamber of International Commerce in an anti-dumping investigation on imports of pipes originating from China; acted for three companies of state-owned XINYEGANG Group and Jingjiang Special Steel Co., in an investigation into imports of pipes and tubes originating from China; represents three companies of France’s Saint-Gobain Group in an anti-dumping investigation against imports of insulation materials; protected the interests of Elm-plastic GmbH in a safeguard investigation into imports to Ukraine of syringes regardless of the country of origin and export without imposition of safeguard measures. The firm has an accomplished commercial practice assisting with structuring supply, distribution and franchising. The firm recently advised Applied Molecular Transport Inc. on drafting contractual instruments related to the supply of medicine samples for conducting clinical trials in Ukraine; provides ongoing legal support to Inditex Group on customs valuation, customs payments, and commercial issues. OleksandrTereshchenko, senior associate, represents clients in trade investigations and advises on bilateral free trade agreements. In December 2020 Mariya Nizhnik (previously— First Deputy Chair of the Antimonopoly Committee of Ukraine and a member of the Interdepartmental Commission on International Trade) rejoined the firm as a partner and practice lead. Corporate and M&A partner Anna Babych heads the commercial and distribution practice. Managing partner Denis Lysenko supervises tax and customs projects.
Given its globally recognized practice of structuring supply chains across various jurisdictions, Baker McKenzie is a port of call for Ukrainian manufacturers and big multinational corporations for product regulation, customs clearance and supply contracts, export and import controls in Ukraine, structuring direct sales on the Ukrainian market and organizing supply chains around the world. The trade team maintains involvement in anti-dumping and safeguard cases, as well as review of trade remedies. Sanctions compliance is another recent area of growth. The office handled representation of PJSC ArcelorMittal Kryvyi Rih during a probe into alleged discriminatory and/or hostile actions by the Republic of Belarus affecting the legitimate rights and interests of Ukrainian entities engaged in foreign economic activities. Hanna Shtepa heads the international commercial and trade practice in the Kyiv office. Nadiia Filozop is noted for involvement in trade remedies matters and sanctions advice.
Attorneys’ Association Gestors is known for its established trade remedies practice. The firm currently supports Small Enterprise FIRMA PKT in the preparation of an anti-dumping complaint in an anti-dumping investigation regarding the import of aluminum disks originating from China and the Russian Federation; acts for the Association of Furniture and Woodworking Enterprises of Ukraine in an anti-dumping investigation regarding import of plywood originating in Belarus. The practice is led by Yaroslav Snigur.
INTEGRITES demonstrated its growing trade remedies portfolio, representing importers in trade investigations and advising domestic producers in bringing complaints for initiation of such probes. In a recent highlight the firm acts for 12 leading Ukrainian dairy products producers in initiating a safeguard investigation against import of certain dairy products into Ukraine. Acting on the importer side, the firm represented caustic soda importer LLC Nikolaev Alumina Plant, which is part of RUSAL Group, in a safeguard investigation against caustic soda imports coming into Ukraine; represented NBT AS (Norway) during a safeguard investigation against the import of wires to the territory of Ukraine. In addition, the firm advises Centravis Production Ukraine PJSC, one of the largest specialized enterprises for producing seamless stainless-steel pipes and tubes, on revision of current anti-dumping measures related to the import of stainless pipes produced in Ukraine into the territory of the Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU). The practice is led by Sergey Lakhno and Yevgen Ivanets, both known for their economic backgrounds. The arbitration team, as headed by Olena Perepelynska, is experienced in GAFTA proceedings and enforcement of GAFTA arbitral awards in Ukraine. The firm traditionally assists clients with cross-border contracts, customs matters, and also sanctions compliance advice. Most recently the firm advised BGS Rail, a Ukraine-based company established by Baltic Ground Services, on the acquisition of railway wagons by a Ukrainian company specializing in the lease of different types of wagons. Viktoriya Fomenko acts as lead partner.
Sergii Koziakov & Partners is increasingly active in trade remedies, export control, customs, cross-border supply issues. Throughout 2020 the firm successfully represented Compo Expert GmbH (Germany) and Agropolychim AD (Bulgaria) in a safeguard investigation regarding imports into Ukraine of mineral fertilizers with nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium, regardless of the country of origin and export, acted for a number of leading foreign chemical producers in a safeguard investigation on imports of nitrogen fertilizers (in particular: ammonium nitrate, urea and the mixtures of urea and ammonium), regardless of the country of origin and export. The team is currently acting for Belarusian producers and exporters Soyuz-Cable in a safeguard investigation regarding imports of wires to Ukraine regardless of the country of origin and export. Nataliia Isakhanova is practice lead. Andrii Pylypenko is singled out by peers during assessment.
Market insiders noted the presence of Dynasty Law Firm with the key practitioner Snizhana Karagodina in the trade remedies space. The market also noticed the recent visibility of MORIS GROUP in entering trade investigations space.
AGA Partners (it operated under the AVELLUM brand name until late May 2020), conducts major cases for the world’s largest trading companies and corporations, and captured the long-standing loyalty of the largest Ukrainian agricultural holdings. The team is a top choice in commodity arbitration, namely GAFTA, FOSFA and LMAA cases. The firm advised Astarta Holding LLC, one of the biggest agriholdings in Ukraine, concerning its trading model and developed a sale contract template governed by English law for the sale of agricultural commodities to be used by the whole group globally, and also advised it in a complex dispute arising under a sale contract governed by English law with a major Qatar trading company. AGA Partners successfully represented the State Food and Grain Corporation of Ukraine in GAFTA arbitration against buyers (Switzerland) in a dispute concerning the recovery of the price for delivered goods. The largest commodities practice on the market is led by Ivan Kasynyuk and Iryna Moroz, supported by a number of executives — Iurii Gulevatyi, Dmytro Koval and Ievgen Boiarskyi. Aminat Suleymanova, managing partner, preserves her strategic role for client development.
Ukrainian boutique ARBITRADE retains its position as one of the leading counsels in structuring trade in agrarian commodities and subsequent dispute resolution. The firm is highly sought after by Ukrainian and foreign traders in agricultural commodities for representation in pre-arbitral settlement negotiations in disputes arising out of international contracts for the sale and purchase of agricultural commodities, and arbitrations under the auspices of GAFTA/FOSFA under English law, as well as in arbitration under ICAC rules at the UCCI. For example, the firm successfully represented Bunge SA in a dispute with the subsidiary companies of Agroprosperis Group on the late delivery of soybeans; advised AGROTRADE A.G., a German cattle and crops exporter, on the consequences of its non-delivery of soybean meal of Argentinian origin to a Turkish counterparty under a contract coming under Iranian law. Two partners, namely Pavlo Trytenichenko and Dr. Ivan Vashchynets, lead the practice. Yuliya Chernykh commands considerable knowledge in commodities arbitration.
Odesa-based law firm Interlegal, with six offices across the Black Sea region, traditionally advises on trade contracts governed by GAFTA, FOSFA proformas and represents clients in subsequent arbitration proceedings. The workload of the international trade team includes disputes on freight and debt recovery, product liability. Given its strong focus on maritime law, the firm is retained for advice to trade companies on issues related to obligations under sale contracts and relationships with carriers, freight forwarders and terminals. The practice is led by Artem Skorobogatov (Ukrainian law contracts) and Alexey Remeslo (English law contracts).
Eterna Law maintains a stable presence in commodity arbitrations under the rules of GAFTA, FOSFA, SAOL, LME and LMAA. Most recently the firm acted in an India-seated arbitration matter arising from fraudulent misappropriation of cargo. The firm is experienced in anti-dumping investigations and appeals in Ukrainian courts against imposed duties. The team maintained advising Detskiy Mir, a long-standing client and large multinational retailer, on franchises, licensing and supply agreements in CIS countries. Eugene Blinov traditionally leads commodities arbitrations. Mykhaylo Korchynskyy was endorsed during peers’ review for his strong representation of clients in GAFTA/FOSFA arbitration. Oleh Malskyy is in charge of cross-border commercial arrangements.
International firm Fortior Law has international trade as one of its main practice areas. The office in Kyiv is experienced in soft commodities, advising on contentious issues which arise between traders and their counterparties, owners, terminals, freight forwarders, surveyors, port authorities, and handles dispute resolution under GAFTA and FOSFA contracts. Another area of focus is hard commodities, particularly in the trading of crude oil and petroleum products in Eastern Europe and Central Asia. The firm also advises on trade finance. Major clients include Integral Petroleum SA, United Petroleum Trading Switzerland SA, East-West Logistics LLP, Petrochemical Logistics LTD, Blockchain Optimization SA. Danil Hristich is the practice head. Sergey Platonov is another key practitioner.
Odesa-based law firm Legrant retains its focus on maritime and shipping, and regularly represents clients on contractual disputes that have arisen from international trade. The firm has experience in arbitration under and GAFTA, FOSFA and LMAA proceedings, and often represents the interests of international traders. Tatyana Titarenko is the key contact.
Lamwell Law Firm and its managing partner Andrii Shulga were noted for expertise in commodities during the poll.
AVELLUM has multidisciplinary expertise in conducting tax efficient contractual structures for supply chains, customs issues, trade contracts, production and distribution agreements. With an extensive portfolio of foreign banks, credit agencies and international financial institutions and a stellar banking practice, the firm has an established practice in international trade finance. The firm’s arbitration practice advises on arbitration cases which originated from trade contracts. During the period under research the team acted in four arbitrations before the International Commercial Arbitration Court at the Ukrainian Chamber of Commerce and Industry, and acted in insolvency proceedings in Ukraine connected to the international supply of oil products. Application of sanctions is another area of focus. The workflow is managed by three partners, namely Mykola Stetsenko, Glib Bondar and Vadim Medvedev.
Gramatskiy & Partners provides robust expertise in cross-border trade contracts, inter alia, structuring export and import deals, export control, customs clearance, currency liberalization, logistics, transportation matters. The firm is heavily involved in structuring supply chain agreements and logistic services, as well as tolling arrangements. The established practice includes soft agricultural commodities, food and beverages, technology and engineering services. The firm is particularly keen on supporting cross-border supply of technological equipment, and also structures the export of software products and support services abroad. Andrii Trembich heads the practice.
Nobles has a sharp focus on advising global companies on establishing and expanding suitable sales, distribution and logistics systems to Ukraine, structuring of supply chains, franchising, e-commerce business. The firm assists with distributorship agreements between foreign manufacturers and Ukrainian distributors, including IP-related issues, regulatory and customs. Clients include Advanced Micro Devices, Inc., Denmark’s Export Credit Agency, KIA Motors, GAP Inc., GE Healthcare, Eterna Shirts, Zooplus AG, Spacebit Global Ltd. The practice is led by two partners, namely Alexander Weigelt and Volodymyr Yakubovskyy.
Lviv-based law firm First Chair Legal focuses its offering on trade configurations, customs compliance, and renders support in achieving authorized economic operator status. International companies from a range of sectors (e.g., medical technology, electric equipment, transport, metalworking, furniture fittings manufacturing, etc.) are among its clients. The firm recently assisted a Nordic fish producer with market entrance, trade configuration, and legal support of tolling. The practice is led by managing partner Oleg Kyryievskyi, and of counsel Marius Bordalba.
The commercial and distribution practice of Peterka & Partners, coupled with its CEE network, provides advisory on shaping contractual relationships, and has an industrial focus on the automotive and pharmaceutical sectors. The firm delivered legal advisory to Crown Equipment Corporation, a US-based company, one of the largest manufacturers of powered industrial forklift trucks in the world, regarding executing a dealer agreement with one of its distributors; assisted Mekoprint, a Danish-based producer and global supplier of electronic ware, with various cross-border agreements underlying the company’s business in Ukraine. Taras Utiralov is the key contact in Ukraine.
INTERNATIONAL LAW FIRMS
Van Bael & Bellis (VBB) possesses unmatched experience in representing Ukrainian companies in trade defense investigations in the EU as well as in other jurisdictions. The Brussels-based practice team represented Metinvest in a major trade defense investigation in the EU regarding imports of flat steel products. It also represented the entire Ukrainian steel industry in an EU safeguard investigation against imports of various steel products. Interpipe is regularly represented in EU trade investigations as well as in EU Court proceedings. The firm’s trade defense practice on behalf of Ukrainian clients is led by partner Yuriy Rudyuk, with significant contribution from Sergiy Beketov. The Geneva office focuses on WTO matters and provided extensive legal support to the government of Ukraine in several WTO dispute settlement proceedings against the Russian Federation. The team included Joanna Redelbach and Tetyana Payosova, guided by partners — Philippe De Baere, Clotilde du Parc and Isabelle Van Damme.
Another global legal services provider involved in trade remedies is Mayer Brown. Nikolay Mizulin, a Brussels-based partner, was named during the poll.
Ukrainian counsel noted several foreign law firms active in the commodities area involving Ukrainian clients. These are Clyde & Co, Ince & Co, Hill Dickinson, Stephenson Harwood, Reed Smith.
 In 2020 Natalya Myroshnychenko and Andrey Perepelitsa left the firm.