Mohamed S. Abdel Wahab
Founding Partner & Head of International Arbitration, Construction, and Energy Groups
Prof. Dr. Abdel Wahab is the Chair of the Private International law Department and Professor of International Arbitration and English law at Cairo University; Chair of the International Expert Committee of the Permanent Forum of China Construction Law – China; Vice President of the ICC International Court of Arbitration (2015 – 2021); Dean and Member of the Advisory Council of the Africa Arbitration Academy; Member of the ICCA Governing Board; Member of the Governing Board of International Council on Online Dispute Resolution (ICODR) Member of the Advisory Board, Mauritius International Arbitration Centre (MIAC); Senior Vice-Chair, IBA Arab Regional Forum; Former Court Member of the LCIA (2014-2019); Former President of LCIA’s Arab Users’ Council (2016-2018); Former Vice Chair of the IBA Arbitration Committee (2015-2018); Former Vice Chair, Academic Forum for Investor-State Dispute Settlement (2018 – 2020); Court Member of the Casablanca International Mediation and Arbitration Center (CIMAC); Vice President of the CRCICA Advisory Committee; Member of the SIAC African Users’ Council’s Committee; Member of the Board of Trustees of the CIArb; former President of the Egypt Branch, Chartered Institute of Arbitrators (CIArb) (2018); former Member of the CIArb’s Board of Management (2018); former Chair of the CIArb’s Technology Sub-Committee (2012–2014); former Member of the CIArb’s Practice and Standards Committee (2012 – 2018); former Committee Member of the IBA Investment Arbitration Sub-Committee (2016–2017). Prof. Dr. Abdel Wahab is also Fellow of the National Centre for Technology and Dispute Resolution at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, USA; Associate Fellow, Centre for Private International Law, Aberdeen University, UK; and Director for the CIArb’s Flagship International Arbitration Diploma – University Oxford.
Prof. Dr. Mohamed Abdel Wahab served as ‘Sole Arbitrator’, ‘Presiding Arbitrator’, ‘Party Appointed Arbitrator’, ‘Legal Expert’ or ‘Counsel’ in more than 230 arbitration cases, including complex, high value institutional and ad hoc arbitral proceedings involving parties from the Middle East, Europe, Africa, Asia, Canada, and the United States. He appeared as arbitrator, counsel and legal expert in cases under the auspices of the AAA-BCDR (Bahrain), ADCCAC (UAE), CRCICA (Egypt), DIAC (UAE), DIFC-LCIA (UAE), ICC (France), ICSID (USA), KIAC (Rwanda), LCIA (UK), LMAA (UK), RCICAL (Nigeria), SCC (Sweden), SIAC (Singapore), TIAC (Uzbekistan) as well as ad hoc UNCITRAL proceedings, involving mega multi-hundred million dollars disputes involving private parties, investors, States and State-owned entities from many different countries. He featured in proceedings governed by Afghanistani, Angolan, Bahraini, Californian, Egyptian, English, French, Iraqi, Italian, Japanese, Jordanian, Kenyan, Kuwaiti, Libyan, Moroccan, New York, Nigerian, Omani, Pakistani, Qatari, Rwandan, Saudi, Spanish, Swiss, Syrian, United Arab Emirates law(s) and Uzbekistani as well as the general principles of law.
As arbitration counsel, Prof. Dr. Abdel Wahab prosecuted cases under all major institutional rules and secured landmark wins for clients in leading commercial and investment arbitration cases under the laws of Egypt, England & Wales, France, Kuwait, Libya, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Switzerland, Syria, UAE as well as the general principles of law. His expertise in cross border multi-jurisdictional and highly complex transactions and disputes is broad and unique within the MENA region and Africa.
Prof. Dr. Abdel Wahab is recognized as a world-leading arbitrator and arbitration practitioner on international investment and international commercial arbitration, construction law & practice, Energy law and infrastructure disputes, Egyptian, Arab and African Laws, Islamic Shari’a, private international law and online dispute resolution.
As ‘Legal Expert’, he opined on Bahraini, Egyptian, Emirati, English, Jordanian, Kuwaiti, Libyan, Omani, Qatari, and Saudi laws in relation to issues of conflict of laws, contract law, international jurisdiction, construction law & practice, telecommunications law, hotel management agreements, Islamic Shari’a, project finance, administrative law, commercial and civil laws, and insurance law & practice).
His expertise in cross border multi-jurisdictional and highly complex transactions and disputes is extensive and broad. Professor Dr Abdel Wahab is listed on the rosters of many arbitral institutions including (ADGMAC), UAE; (EODID), Greece; (AIAC), Malaysia; BCDR-AAA, Bahrain; (CRCICA), Egypt; (CGAC), China; (CIETAC), China; (DIAC), UAE; (CEA), France & Italy; (EMAC), UAE; (EDAC), Turkey; Hainan International Arbitration Court (Hainan Arbitration Commission), China; (KCAB INTERNATIONAL), Korea; (LACIAC), Nigeria; (MARC), Mauritius; (OAC), Oman; Russian Arbitration Center, Russian Institute of Modern Arbitration, Russia; (SCIA), China; (SHIAC), China; (TIAC), Uzbekistan; and (VIAC), Austria.
Prof. Dr. Mohamed S. Abdel Wahab is widely published on issues of international law, international investment and commercial arbitration, conflict of laws, construction law, oil & gas, corporate and law and project finance. He is a world-renowned authority on Online Dispute Resolution and is co-editor (with Ethan Katsh and Daniel Rainey) of the leading treatise “Online Dispute Resolution Theory & Practice” (2012) which received the CPR Award for best dispute resolution work in 2013. A new edition of this leading treatise is due out in 2021. He is also co-editor (with Maxi Scherer and Niuscha Bassiri) of “International Arbitration and the COVID-19 Revolution” (2020), and is the author of the Abdel Wahab Pandemic Pathway to Virtual Hearings, which was published by the Global Arbitration Review on 6 May 2020 (and translated into other languages including Arabic, Chinese, Portuguese and Spanish. The Chinese version is published in the Beijing International Arbitration Quarterly Vol.112 (2020, No.2).
He delivered more than 300 conference presentations, trainings, webinars and keynote speeches on international investment arbitration, international commercial arbitration, conflict of laws, international law, comparative law, construction law & practice, energy, project finance and public-private partnerships, cultural globalisation, online dispute resolution, international commercial transactions, insurance law and practice, telecommunications law and Islamic finance and Shari’a.
Prof. Dr. Abdel Wahab featured in the first issues of Who’s Who Legal Thought Leaders: International Arbitration (2017), (2018), (2019) and (2020) listing the world’s leading arbitration practitioners. Most recently, in 2021, he featured among the top 64 world leading practitioners in Who’s Who Global Elite Thought Leaders: International Arbitration (2021), in AFRICA’s 30 Arbitration Powerlist (2020) and in I-ARB AFRICA’s 100 leading African practitioners. He was also selected as the African Personality by Africa Arbitration in June 2018, and by the LACIAC in May 2019. He received the LAW Magazine 2017 Best Legal Practitioner Award, the 2018 ASA International Arbitration Advocacy Prize (as the first African to receive this prestigious prize), the 2019 AYA Hall-of-Fame African Arbitrator Award, the 2020 Client Choice International Award and the 2021 Lawdragon Global Litigation 500 Award.
Chambers & Partners Global (2021) says, “Peers regard Mohamed Abdel Wahab as “an absolute star in arbitration”, “He is very charismatic and engaging – the way he speaks shows the deep knowledge he has”, “He is always on top of the work and has an excellent knowledge of the market and the law”. Who’s Who Legal: Arbitration (2021) says: “He is a top-tier thought leader and in a league of his own” and “a very well-prepared and exceptional arbitrator”. Client Choice International (2020) says: “Mohamed is an exceptional lawyer; he has extraordinary focus and an impressive knowledge of the law”, “Mohamed outshines his competitors; he is world-class. He is really an outstanding and leading practitioner in the field: impressive, proactive, a very good speaker, and a very impartial and independent arbitrator”, “He is extremely efficient and reliable; he is one of the most brilliant legal brains of his generation”, and “He is very knowledgeable, extremely responsive, brilliantly outstanding and an excellent arbitrator and counsel”. Who’s Who Legal: Arbitration (2020) says: Mohamed Abdel Wahab “is at the top of the market” and “a very well-prepared, exceptional arbitrator”. Who’s Who Legal: Construction (2020) says: “Mohamed Abdel Wahab is “very experienced” in construction disputes. He is hailed as “the leading commercial arbitrator in Egypt and arguably the MENA region”. The Legal 500 (2019) stated Mohamed Abdel Wahab as ‘an arbitration expert with a global reputation’, who is ‘one of the best in the world’. Who’s Who Legal (2019) says: Mohamed Abdel Wahab is “a leader in the space” who is “at the top of the market”. He is described as “a star” who offers “practical advice and a tireless approach”. Who’s Who Legal Construction (2019) says: Mohamed Abdel Wahab is highlighted as “a leading heavyweight construction law specialist whose analytical skills are second to none”. Chambers & Partners Global (2019) ranks Prof. Dr. Mohamed Abdel Wahab as the STAR individual in Egypt and states that ‘Mohamed Abdel Wahab is consistently described by clients as a “superstar in arbitration”’. He is praised as “a good strategic thinker” and is acknowledged for his “deep understanding of the issues surrounding disputes in the construction and oil and gas sectors”. Who’s Who Legal (2017-2018) says: Mohamed Abdel Wahab is “one of the best practitioners in the world today” thanks to his “sharp mind and excellent legal knowledge”. Who’s Who Legal (2016- 2017) says: Mohamed Abdel Wahab impresses all he works with: “I was cross-examined by him and he did a great job; he really earned my respect” says one interviewee. “He is a great asset to the Middle Eastern arbitration community”. Chambers & Partners Global (2017) ranks Prof. Dr. Mohamed Abdel Wahab as the STAR individual in Egypt and states: “The ‘top-notch’ Mohamed Abdel Wahab retains his position as a distinguished leader in the market after receiving a wealth of praise from peers and clients alike. One market commentator added: ‘He is extraordinary – a bundle of energy, and academically extremely strong’.” The Legal 500 (2014-2016) stated that Mohamed Abdel Wahab is “one of the brightest of his generation, a strong thinker and excellent advocate who knows arbitration inside out”. The Legal 500 (2017) stated that ‘Sharp, focused and highly intelligent’ head of international arbitration Mohamed Abdel Wahab is ‘an exceptional practitioner’. The Legal 500 (2018) stated that ‘Deep thinker’ Mohamed Abdel Wahab has ‘a remarkable intellect’ and ‘impressive advocacy skills’.
Prof. Dr. Abdel Wahab read law in Egypt and the UK, and speaks Arabic, English and French.