Alistair Bridges

Special Counsel and Head of Regulatory
Practice areas
Competition and regulatory
International trade
Public and administrative law
Manufacturing and supply chain
Export controls and sanctions

Alistair is a special counsel at Moulis Legal and a key member of the firm’s international trade practice. Alistair also heads our regulatory practice. 

Alistair is a key resource for our clients in the handling of major trade, commercial and cross-border matters, and in administrative law, including Federal Court review of government action.

Alistair has significant experience in international trade law matters, including anti-dumping and countervailing investigations, safeguards investigations, customs valuations and classifications, export controls/sanctions compliance, complex domestic and cross-border commercial transactions and judicial review litigation. His strong skills in research, legislative interpretation, development of legal argumentation and strategy and legal drafting, and his thorough understanding of the commercial, societal and political context in which his clients operate, allow him to provide thorough and nuanced representation and advice.

In recognition of his experience, Alistair is acknowledged as an “Associate to Watch” in the International Law/WTO arena by Chambers & Partners. He was recognised as one of Australia’s 21 most outstanding young lawyers by The Australian newspaper and is listed as a leading export control and sanctions expert by the Journal of Export Controls and Sanctions.

Alistair is a Specialist in Administrative Law accredited by the Law Institute of Victoria. He has a Masters Degree (with Merit) in Laws specialising in international law, and a Graduate Diploma in Legal Practice (with Merit) both from the Australian National University. As well, he has a Bachelor of Economics (majoring in economic analysis) and a Bachelor Degree in Law (with Honours) from the University of Tasmania. He is admitted to the Supreme Court of Victoria.

Most recently, Alistair has been recognised by the International Financial Law Review (IFLR) in its 2022 Asia Pacific awards as the only Rising Star in International Trade.

Before commencing at Moulis Legal, Alistair completed the Australian Tax Office graduate program, where he received a great deal of technical experience in tax affairs and the workings of government. He was exposed to both the policy side of the agency’s responsibilities and the legal implementation of those policies. Most notably, he worked in the team responsible for the agency’s implementation of the Future Tax System Review.

During his time at the University of Tasmania, Alistair held the office of Careers and Social Justice Officer for the Tasmanian University Law Society, and Australian Legal Education Forum Co-ordinator for the Australian Law Student Association Committee. In between these commitments he also acted as a freelance writer and radio host for Edge Radio.

In his free time Alistair enjoys reading, going to concerts and Scotch. He appreciates, and makes, a good coffee. One day, soon, he will learn to play the guitar.

Knowledge pieces by Alistair Bridges
Australian sanctions - time to fine-tune your due-diligence?

In this outcome exploring the concepts of "benefits and “dealings with sanctioned entities and individuals", Russian aluminium company Rusal and its investors Oleg Deripaska and Victor Vekselberg failed to convince the court that Australian company Queensland Alumina had breached its contractual supply obligations.

New subsidies for car importers complicate Australia’s EV war

The EV tax space in Australia has been made more complex by yesterday’s Federal Government announcement of a New Vehicle Efficiency Standard from 2025, with accompanying green rebates.

Out with the old, in with the new? Administrative law in 2024

2024 is set to be a big year for Australian administrative law. Here are our predictions for how the administrative law landscape will change in the next 12 months.

The ABC’s of Privacy Act compliance for overseas organisations

The Privacy Act applies to a broad range of organisations, including those that predominantly operate overseas. Here is what overseas organisations need to know about complying with the Privacy Act.

Moulis Legal is Australia's contributor to Chambers Global Practice Guides 2024 | International Trade

This commentary on the international and cross border regulations that affect inbound and outbound Australian trade is required reading for in-house counsel and other company officers who need to know about the relevant regulatory authorities, cross-border compliance, accompanying legal risk, and more.

Moulis Legal in Chambers and Partners’ recently launched Asia-Pacific 2024 Guide

Moulis Legal’s International Trade team astutely looks at the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP).

Don’t judge a bill by its title

While the controls are relevant to defence technology, they also relate to “dual use” technology. This covers numerous items with civil applications, including certain encryption functionalities, specific technology relating to navigation, avionics, computers, and even some commercially available cameras are subject to controls.

The Security of Critical Infrastructure Act 2018 has never been more critical.

Recent major cyber incidents are a reminder of the disruption that can be caused when critical infrastructure is down. The government’s focus on protecting Australia’s critical infrastructure is likely to become a greater priority than it already is, and so, the role of the recently reformed SOCI Act has never been more critical.

A shudder shakes Australian product standards compliance

Businesses manufacturing, importing and/or supplying products in Australia must ensure the products meet Australia’s regulatory standards. Failure to comply with regulatory standards can result in harsh penalties, with the Australian Consumer Law allowing courts to fine companies up to AUD50 million.

New Australian sanctions target serious rights violations

On 29 March 2022, the Australian Government announced the first set of ‘thematic sanctions’. The listings are effective from 30 March 2022.

Australia rushes Russia sanctions into effect

Over the past fortnight, sanctions have dominated news cycles around the world. In an effort to deter Russia’s ongoing military incursions into Ukrainian territory, the world’s major economies have adopted a range of far-reaching and hard-hitting economic sanctions which target individuals and financial entities in Russia, Belarus and two separatist pro-Russian territories in Ukraine.

Due process and reasonableness the real winners in Djokovic saga

In one of the most highly publicised administrative law cases in recent history, Novak Djokovic’s case in the Australian Federal Circuit Court shines a light on the important but often overlooked role of judicial review in the Australian legal system, and the power of procedural fairness and reasonableness in overturning government decisions.

Australia goes Magnitsky - foreign money never more dangerous

Australia has now given greater impetus to the efforts of the international community to stamp out human rights abuse and criminal activities by way of the passage of the Autonomous Sanctions Amendment (Magnitsky-Style and Other Thematic Sanctions) Act 2021. The new law better describes the purposes for which the government may sanction foreign individuals and entities.

Trade law gets serious about labour exploitation

On Monday 23 August 2021, the Senate passed the Customs Amendment (Banning Goods Produced by Forced Labour) Bill 2021. The Bill, if made into law, would prohibit the importation of goods manufactured using forced labour.

Yes, Minister – documents in some cabinets are not secret

The Freedom of Information Act 1982 is one of the marvels of administrative law. It is based on the simple proposition that every person has a right to obtain access to documents held by a government agency or a Minister.

Law in the cloud – where to bite the Apple?

Court proceedings are underway here in Australia between Epic Games Inc (Epic) and Apple Inc (Apple) are well worth watching. Epic, maker of popular ‘battle royale’ game Fortnite, alleges that the App Store user contract by which Apple makes Fortnite available for internet download contains terms and conditions that ‘misuse’ Apple’s market power.

Ordinary goods can be war goods under Australia’s export controls

For the most part, tangible signposts guide decision making on Australian export controls by the government agency that has that responsibility, Defence Export Controls (DEC). The most significant of these is the Defence Strategic Goods List (DSGL).

Nuclear waste debate re-emerges in Australia

Australia has long debated the notion that it could be a significant repository for the warehousing and containment of the world’s nuclear waste. That possibility has re-emerged, with the State Government of South Australia again considering a proposal to build a nuclear waste disposal facility in its remote desert environs.

Iran back in vogue

Australia’s exports to the Islamic Republic of Iran were, at one time, valued at over AUD 1 billion and covered a range of industrial and consumer goods and services. After years of nuclear based sanctions, Australia’s total trade and investment with Iran is valued at less than AUD 300 million and is limited to wheat and related products. 

Australian export sanctions – new suspend and snap-back powers

An amendment to Australia’s export sanctions regulations will give the Minister for Foreign Affairs greater flexibility in amending the scope and application of autonomous sanctions. For businesses doing business in or with any of the 10 regions to which Australia has currently applied autonomous sanctions, these new powers mean that certain actions and activities potentially can be withdrawn from the scope of the existing sanctions regime.

Before you hit “send” – does your email require an export licence?

Enforcement of Australia’s key military and dual-use goods export legislation – the Defence Trade Controls Act 2012 (“DTCA”) – has been pushed back by another year, until 2 April 2016. Businesses should take advantage of this delay to get acquainted with Australia’s new, US-inspired export control system, to ensure that they do not run afoul of these new, broad-reaching licensing requirements.

Senate launches inquiry into non-conforming building products

This week the Australian Senate has referred an inquiry into non-conforming building products to the Senate Economics References Committee. The committee’s report is due on 12 October 2015. The terms of reference require the committee to investigate the economic impact of non-conforming products, and their impact on safety, costs and quality of construction.

Changes to environmental impact study requirements in the ACT

According to the 2010 Scorecard of Red Tape Reform released by the Australian Business Council, the Australian Capital Territory (“ACT”) is the worst jurisdiction in Australia for “red tape” in business regulation.