2017 Speakers

Hilal M. Al Khulaifi
Director, Legal Affairs Department 
Ministry of Economy and Commerce 

Hilal M. Al-Khulaifi is employed with the Ministry of Economy & Commerce (MoEC), hired as the Director Legal Affairs of the Legal Affairs Department. Hilal M. Al-Khulaifi’s immediate responsibilities include managing all legal matters along with providing advice on all new procedures. Along with the above, Hilal M. Al-Khulaifi holds several other key positions that include Chairperson, at the Anti-Concealment Committee and is an active member of many other key committees as the Head of Legal Advisory Panel. Prior to being the Director Legal Affairs at the MoEC, Hilal M. Al-Khulaifi was with the Ministry of Public Health, here his skills and knowledge was essential in building a classic yet effective department that thrived to cater one and all on a national level.
With a Masters in LAW from the (University of Portsmouth – UK), Hilal M. Al-Khulaifi gained valuable knowledge and the knowhow on how to implement corporate and government laws and aspects like the principals of an organization is safe guarded and strategies are implemented flawlessly.

Dr Mohammed A. Al Khulaifi
Dean of The College of Law
Qatar University

Dr. Mohammed A. Al Khulaifi is the Dean of the College of Law (Qatar University) and serves as Assistant professor of Commercial Law in the same University. Dr. Mohammed A. Al-Khulaifi is also a lawyer at Abdulaziz Al-Khulaifi Law Office (since 2011), a Legal Consultant at Qatar Financial Center Regulatory Authority (since 2012) and a Visiting professor at Carnegie Mellon- Qatar (since 2013). Dr. Al-Khulaifi‘s legal researches mainly focus on Business Law (See for example: “Banking Secrecy in light of the Qatari Law”: Journal of Sharia & Law, University of United Arab Emirates, 2014; “Acquisition of Commercial Companies: Comparative study between Qatari and Australian laws”: Legal and Judicial Studies Journal, Ministry of Justice, Doha – Qatar, 2014). Dr. Al-Khulaifi received HH The Emir of Qatar Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani’s Award at the Education Excellence Day (PhD Category) and a fellowship from the Institute of International and Regional Studies at Georgetown University – Qatar for the academic year (2013-2014).

Jason Taylor 
ACC Middle East - Qatar Branch 
Senior Legal & Compliance Counsel

Jason Taylor is a Senior Corporate and Commercial lawyer with over 16 years of experience in private practice and in-house, advising on general corporate, commercial and finance matters, mainly in the oil and gas, mining and petrochemicals sectors.
Jason Taylor has worked in the U.K., the U.A.E., Saudi Arabia, Japan and Qatar.
Mr Taylor is the Director of the Association of Corporate Counsel (ACC) Middle East – Qatar Branch.

Matthew Walker
K&L Gates

Matthew Walker, a partner in the Doha office of K&L Gates, focuses his practice in construction law and dispute resolution. He has acted as advocate and counsel in ICC and QICCA arbitrations in Qatar, the UAE, Saudi Arabia, Turkey, India and the UK, as co-counsel in cases before the Qatar Court of First Instance, and has litigated in the Technology & Construction Court and the Court of Appeal in England. He has also been nominated as a party-appointed arbitrator in a QICCA arbitration. He was involved in a series of multimillion pound adjudications, arbitrations and mediations relating to a telecommunications system on a major underground rail network, and an international adjudication related to a gas facility in Tanzania. He is a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators and a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Building. Mr. Walker also provides non-contentious construction advice, particularly in the rail sector.

Sultan Al-Abdulla
Founding Partner
Sultan Al Abdulla & Partners

Sultan Al-Abdulla is the founder and managing partner of Sultan Al-Abdulla & Partners. Prior to joining private practice, he worked for the national oil company in Qatar (Qatar Petroleum - QP) where he served in a number of positions including QP’s managing counsel. He also represented the government, QP and QP subsidiaries in numerous oil and gas transactions. Since starting his private practice in 1999, he advised many governmental agencies, national and multinational corporations on corporate and commercial matters. He currently focuses on representing clients before judicial and arbitral tribunals in and outside Qatar. His recent work includes serving as an arbitrator. As a litigator, Mr Al-Abdulla is ranked by Chambers and Partners in Band 1 for Dispute Resolution. He holds a Bachelor of Laws degree from Beirut Arab University (Lebanon) and a Master of Laws degree (International and Comparative Law) from Southern Methodist University (USA).

Salman Mahmood
Sultan Al Abdulla & Partners

Salman Mahmood has been in the legal profession since 1996. He started his practice in Pakistan where he advised a number of international and domestic companies in the power and upstream oil & gas sectors.
Since early 2007, Mr Mahmood has practiced with Sultan Al-Abdulla & Partners. He assists clients in managing their tax as well as on the structuring of their business operations and commercial transactions. He and his team advise on all aspects of withholdings and retentions, as well as on the legal and contractual aspects of their business generally to ensure the best outcome for clients.
He holds an LLB from the University of Punjab and an LLM in Commercial and Corporate Law from the University of London.
Mr Mahmood is licensed as an Advocate of the High Court by the Punjab Bar Council in Pakistan and is authorised to practice law in Qatar. He is fluent in Urdu and English.

Michael Patchett-Joyce

Michael Patchett Joyce is a barrister (and arbitrator and mediator) based in London and the UAE.
He has specialised in VAT cases for over 15 years, representing clients at all levels of the tribunal and court hierarchy in England, and has acted as Counsel in three important VAT cases before the CJEU (Halifax, Optigen/Bond House and Bonik).
Mr Patchett-Joyce is a member of the Scientific Board of the MENA Business Law Review (LexisNexis), and is Editor of the forthcoming special edition on VAT in the Gulf.
He is the founder of CAPPLEX Limited, through which he provides consultancy services in conjunction with Trends Research & Advisory, Abu Dhabi.
Mr Patchett-Joyce is a member of Outer Temple Chambers.

Diane Mullenex
Head of Global Telecommunications
Pinsent Masons

Diane Mullenex is the head of the Global Telecommunications practice and leads the Pinsent Masons’ activities on telecommunications matters worldwide. She brings her unique international experience in the sector to her clients and, in particular, leads the firm's activities on telecommunications and smart cities matters worldwide. Dual qualified in France and England, she worked for seven years in Asia before returning to Europe. She has worked in the Middle East, Europe, Asia and Africa where her clients seek her advice notably on entry into new markets, cross border telecoms transactions globally, broadband strategy and rollout as well as digital transformation projects. In relation to digital transformation projects, Diane has developed extensive experience on smart cities project (either newly-built or retrofit) and regularly provides advice to networks providers, local councils, infrastructure consultants on the roll out of networks and integrated systems.

Ghada Darwish
Managing Partner
Ghada M. Darwish Law Firm

Ghada Darwish is the managing partner of Ghada M. Darwish Law Firm in Qatar, which provides legal services to clients in all fields such as those relating to corporate and commercial matters in addition to the settlement of disputes. Before founding her own practice, Ghada Darwish worked for the National Human Rights Committee (NHRC) as a legal scholar and researcher until got promoted as the Head of Investigations and Legal Advice. After that, she joined the Law Firm of HE Khalid Al-Attiyah (Minister of State for Defense of Qatar) as Manager and Lawyer, and then went to work with Qatar University as a Legal Researcher at the University Chairman’s office. Following that, she joined Qatar Chemicals Company as legal counsel. Ghada Darwish holds a Bachelor’s degree in Sharia and Law L.L.B from Qatar University, and a Master’s degree in Public Law L.L.M from Cairo Univeristy, with ongoing Doctorate degree at Cairo University. She is also currently taking up an LLM Master’s in Sports Law at Qatar Olympic Academy.

Safwan Moubaydeen
Office Managing Partner, Doha
Dentons & Co

Safwan Moubaydeen has more than 30 years' experience practising law in Jordan and the Gulf region, primarily in Qatar and Kuwait. His career includes a period of service at the Royal Hashemite Court of the late King Hussein of Jordan. Safwan is one of the most prominent lawyers in Qatar and Jordan and has been ranked in the Chambers Global 2017 listings.
In addition to his international finance and business expertise, he is also experienced in all aspects of international arbitration matters.
Safwan Moubaydeen has extensive experience advising regulators, banks, governments, national and multinational corporations and others on various aspects of energy, banking, aviation, technology, media and telecommunications law and on legal reform and regulatory matters.
In addition to his managing partner roles in both Doha and Amman, Safwan Moubaydeen also co-heads the Government Sector Leadership Team at Dentons and is the Chair of the Middle East Regional Management Group.

Scott A. Warren
Squire Patton Boggs

Scott A. Warren specializes in cybersecurity, data privacy and digital data disclosures in Asia. He advises on digital compliance, eDiscovery and corporate data privacy for global and local corporations.
He also has significant experience in compliance, intellectual property, litigation, dispute resolution and government regulatory and internal investigations.
He has provided advice to global multinational corporations in the hi-tech, software, retail, healthcare, pharmaceutical, automotive, banking, trading, telecommunications and professional services industries.

Rouda Bahzad
Legal Counsel
Qatar Foundation

Rouda Bahzad joined the Qatar Foundation Legal Department in September 2011.
She holds a Bachelor degree (LLB) LAW from Newcastle University (United Kingdom) and a Master’s degree in International commercial law (LLM) from Cardiff University. She brings with her a wide academic experience in over 14 areas of law such as contract law, land law, family law, international law, human rights, European law including European commercial law, tort and much more. Rouda Bahzad contributed in several national and international political events organized and designed by the leading universities in the world. She is also a member of the Charted institute of Arbitrators (CIArb ) and a certified commercial mediator since 2012.

Dr Yassin ElShazly
Assistant Professor in Commercial Law
Qatar University College of Law

Dr. Yassin EL SHAZLY currently serves as assistant professor of commercial law at Qatar University. He is also associate professor of commercial Law at Ain Shams University (on Leave). He is also visiting professor at the American University in Cairo (AUC). Dr. Shazly holds a doctoral degree in business law from Jean Moulin Lyon 3 University, France. He also holds a Master's degree in law from Ain ​​Shams University and Lyon 2-France and a Master's degree in political science from Jean Moulin Lyon 3- France. Dr. Shazly has an extensive practical experience and he served as a counsel in many legal cases. He also served as legal advisor to the chairman of the Financial Supervisory Authority (Egypt) and as a legal counsel at the National Telecommunications Regulatory Authority (Egypt) and as legal expert for international projects granted by the African Union and the European Union. He started his career as a judge in the Supreme Administrative court in the Egyptian State Council. Dr. Shazly has a hands-on experience in organizing and delivering legal training courses related to business law. He actually serves as a part-time trainer at the Ministry of Economy and trade in Qatar. He is also a certified trainer from the International finance corporation (IFC). Concerning the scientific research, Dr. Shazly published and continue to publish his wok in different areas of business law in many languages (Arabic-English-French).

Judge Dr Ehab Maher Elsonbaty
Senior Legal Counsel, Head of Governance and Government Affairs
Qatar Investment Authority

Judge Dr. Ehab Maher Elsonbaty is the senior legal counsel, head of governance and government affairs in Qatar Investment Authroity since February 2014. Before this he served for almost 6 years as a senior legal advisor to the Amiri Diwan of the State of Qatar and a member of the Council of Ministers Permanent Committee for legislative Affairs in addition to many other legal & policy committees. Previously he served in the Egyptian Public Prosecution and Juduicay for more than 15 years, where his last position was a judge in Cairo's Court of Appeal and advisor to the Minister of Justice for International Cooperation and Human Rights. He is also a certified arbitrator and mediator. Dr. Elsonbaty holds two Masters and PhD degrees. He writes and lectures on cyber laws, litigation & ADRs and private international law in various universities and research institutes. He has provided consultancies to the ITU, UNODC, UNECA, Council of Europe, UNCTAC, UNESCO, Arab League, and ARADO. Dr. Elsonbaty speaks Arabic, English, Italian and French. His areas of specialization are Commercial Transactions (M & A, Corporate), Governance, Private Interntional law (ADRs) Cyber laws, and Criminal Justice.

Dr Zain Al Abdin Sharar
Senior Legal Counsel

Dr Zain Al Abdin Sharar is a senior Legal Counsel at the CEO’s office at the Qatar International Court and Dispute Resolution Centre (QICDRC). Dr Sharar has an extensive experience in the legal industry spanning over 18 years and across varying legal sectors. He holds a Bachelor of Law, Master in International Trade Law, Juris Doctor (JD) and Doctor of Legal Sciences (SJD) from Bond University in Australia, specifically focused on Corporate Governance. Prior to Joining (QICDRC) he was the Director of the Legal Affairs and Enforcement at the Qatar Financial Markets Authority (QFMA), giving him unrivaled extensive  experience  of capital markets, including financial services regulations, regulatory compliance, investment disputes, arbitration, mergers & acquisitions,  risk and crisis management, public affairs, and litigation. Moreover, Dr. Sharar has served for 3 years on the QFMA’s disciplinary committee. Dr Sharar has taught Corporate law and Corporate Governance at a number of Australian Universities and provided legal advice and guidance regarding legal matters to board members of a number of publically listed companies in Australia. Dr Sharar has worked at Qatar university (QU) for three years as an Assistant Professor of Commercial Law and has taught Companies Law and Arbitration Law. Moreover, he has taught Commercial Law and, Maritime & Aviation Law, at Ahmad Bin Mohammed Military College (ABMM) in Qatar, and has lectured on many topics at the legal and Judicial Studies Centre at the Qatari Ministry of Justice. Dr. Sharar is a certified mediator by the Centre for Effective Dispute Resolution (CEDR) in London , and a qualified arbitrator by the GCC Commercial  Arbitration Center. He has provided mediation and arbitration services in many of commercial cases. He also participates in ADR training programs.