Dr. Habib Al Mulla

Baker & McKenzie Habib Al Mulla


Dr. Habib Al Mulla, Executive Chairman of Baker & McKenzie Habib Al Mulla, has over 33 years’ experience in UAE law and has drafted many of Dubai’s modern legislative structures. He is chairman of the Dubai International Arbitration Centre’s (DIAC) Board of Trustees, and chairman of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators’ UAE committee. Dr. Al Mulla is a frequent commentator on UAE legislation and economy and is often consulted to draft and advise on Federal and Emirate level laws. He created the concept of financial free zones in the UAE and was the architect of the legal framework establishing the Dubai International Financial Centre. He also served as legislative committee chairman of the Dubai Financial Services Authority.

Practice Focus

Dr. Al Mulla focuses his practice on litigation and arbitration. He has been lead counsel on numerous UAE and international arbitrations across a variety of sectors including construction, finance, commerce and maritime, as both counselor or expert witness. He is experienced in many arbitration rules including the DIAC, the Abu Dhabi Conciliation and Commercial Arbitration Centre (ADCCAC), the ICC, the LCIA and the ICSID. Dr. Al Mulla is regularly appointed as a party-nominated expert and court expert in domestic and international arbitration proceedings, where he provides opinions on matters relating to UAE law.

Representative Legal Matters

  • Provided opinion on UAE law in an ICC arbitration involving the satellite industry.
  • Provided opinion on UAE law in an ICC arbitration in relation to damages for breach of contract.
  • Provided opinion on UAE law in a DIFC arbitration in relation to bankruptcy and damages.
  • Provided opinion on UAE law in a major Hong Kong court case.
  • Provided opinion on UAE law in a case before the Queen’s Court in the United Kingdom involving banking and real estate transactions.
  • Provided opinion on UAE law in an ICC arbitration in relation to a contract for the supply of technology.
  • Acted as sole arbitrator in Qatar-based ICC arbitration involving a major construction project in Qatar between two Middle Eastern companies.
  • Acted as co-arbitrator in a Qatar-based ICC arbitration involving a major construction project between an Indian and a UAE company.
  • Acted as party-appointed arbitrator in two London-based ICC arbitrations involving disputes over contracts for the supply of iron ore between Indian and UAE-based companies.
  • Co-counseling the government of Dubai along with an international law firm in a Port Concession Agreement under ICSID proceedings.

Professional Associations and Memberships

  • Federal National Council 2000-2002 - Member
  • Dubai School of Government - 2009-2012 - Board of Trustees
  • American University in Dubai - Vice President of the Board of Governors
  • Dubai Financial Service Authority 2003-2006 - Chairman
  • Chartered Institute of Arbitrators (MCIArb) - Fellow
  • UAE ICC National Committee - Member
  • ICC Institute - Member
  • Dubai International Arbitration Centre (DIAC) - Board of Trustees, Member & Vice Chair
  • Technology, Electronic Commerce and Media Free Zone Authority (TECOM) - Member of Panel of Experts of the Broadcasting and Publications Standards Tribunal


  • United Arab Emirates (1984)


  • University of Cambridge (Ph.D.) (1993)
  • Harvard Law School (Master of Law) (1987)
  • UAE University (LL.B. Shari'a and Law) (1984)


  • Arabic
  • English