Negotiating in the Arab Gulf Region

About the Course:

Warning: Negotiating in the Arab Gulf region without listening to this session may be damaging to your career prospects and financial health.

Before setting foot in the Arab Gulf, you must understand how your negotiations will likely be shaped by local customs, the dictates of Islam and the teachings of Shari'a law. You must be aware of risks such as the possibility of commercial disputes triggering criminal charges against you and the revocation of visas of intractable negotiators. You must also be able negotiate suitable measures to reduce the arbitrariness of contractual interpretations.

Our course leader begins the session by providing key data points relative to the individual Gulf countries. This is followed by a discussion of issues such as:

  • Are Gulf Arabs typically more short-term or long-term orientated?
  • What are some of the cultural differences among the various Gulf countries?
  • Who should make the opening offer? You or your Arab counterpart?
  • Should you expect Gulf Arabs to make aggressive opening offers?
  • How should you respond to an aggressive opening offer in the Arab Gulf?
  • Do Gulf Arabs typically negotiate in a sequential or non-sequential manner?
  • What body language on the part of a Gulf Arab signals that it is time to change the subject?
  • What is the role of smoking when negotiating in the Arab Gulf?
  • How should you conduct yourself when your counterparts take prayer breaks?
  • Is the verbal word or the written word given more credence in the Arab world?
  • Is it appropriate to bring a "silent translator" to negotiations in the Arab Gulf?
  • Should you expect interruptions when negotiating in the Arab Gulf?
  • What is expected in terms of gift giving when meeting with Arab counterparts?
  • How should foreign women dress and conduct themselves when negotiating in the Arab Gulf?
  • How much touching should you expect when negotiating in the Arab Gulf?
  • Is there typically more or less personal space granted when negotiating with Gulf Arabs?
  • What should you know about pointing?
  • What should you avoid doing when passing food in the Arab Gulf?
  • Is it wise to try to de-sensitize Gulf Arabs by using props such as financial models to articulate your negotiating positions?
  • How might your Gulf counterparts feel about the publicizing of your negotiations?
  • What should you know about business cards before departing for the Arab Gulf?
  • Is it acceptable to use humor when negotiating with Gulf Arabs?
  • What kinds of personal questions should you refrain from asking with negotiating with Gulf Arabs?

Course Leaders: Scott Hutton, Lawyer, Kilpatrick Townsend & Stockton LLP Scott Hutton focuses his practice on construction and development matters. He also deals with all property related matters including sales, purchases, landlord and tenant and investment issues.

Mr. Hutton has a wide ranging practice with a broad mix of clients both locally and internationally. He has considerable experience in acting for employers, contractors and funders. He acts for local developers and landlords as well as international investors and contractors. Mr. Hutton is well acquainted with all of the standard forms of construction contract, with an emphasis on the FIDIC based contract, the most common form of contract used in the UAE.

Mr. Hutton has extensive experience of the commercial property and construction markets of Scotland, Ireland and the UAE. He has represented major developers in residential, leisure, commercial and mixed use developments. He advises both landlords and tenants on all leasing related matters and is keen to promote a better understanding of the FRI (full repairing and insuring) lease in the UAE.

In 2009, Mr. Hutton was recommended by the Legal 500 for "attention to detail, in-depth knowledge of the applicable laws and interpretation of the law's application in the commercial environment of Dubai."

Course Length: Approx. 1.5 hours

$295.00 PER USER

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Need help purchasing this course? Please contact Neomi Barazani at 609-919-1895 ext. 100 or at