Described as a "star" with a "superb reputation for Middle East disputes", Mr Ghaffari is an experienced international arbitration partner. He is the managing partner of the firm’s Dubai office and head of its MENA dispute resolution practice. Mr Ghaffari has acted as counsel in more than 75 international commercial and construction arbitrations administered under the rules of all the major arbitral institutions, as well as in ad hoc proceedings. In addition to his arbitration work, Mr Ghaffari regularly appears as an advocate before the Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC) Courts of First Instance and Appeal.
Mr Ghaffari represents clients across a number of sectors, and has developed particular experience in relation to large, complex and high-value infrastructure, energy and construction disputes. His clients include project owners and developers, EPC and EPCM contractors, architects and engineers, major equipment suppliers, insurers and subcontractors. Mr Ghaffari also represents governments (or their ministries) and major corporations in energy disputes, involving chemical, petrochemical and other manufacturing and processing plants; onshore and offshore oil and gas facilities; FPSOs; refineries; desalination plants; pipelines; and nuclear and fossil fuel plants.
Mr Ghaffari regularly sits as an arbitrator (including as presiding and sole arbitrator), under the ICC, LCIA and DIFC-LCIA Rules.
Mr Ghaffari is a solicitor-advocate (England and Wales) and an advocate of the DIFC Courts (UAE). He has lived and practised international arbitration in London (where he trained), Dubai and Paris. Over the years, Mr Ghaffari has been recognised for his work in the field of international arbitration by, among others, Chambers Global, Chambers UK, The Legal 500 – EMEA, The Legal 500 – UK, WWL: International Arbitration and The Guide to the World’s Leading Experts in Commercial Arbitration.
Vinson & Elkins’ MENA dispute resolution team includes US, English, regionally qualified and Saudi-licensed lawyers, located in Dubai and Riyadh. The Dubai team is fluent in 10 languages: English, Arabic, Chinese, Farsi, French, Italian, Russian, Spanish, Portuguese and Turkish. The Dubai team supports clients across a range of industry sectors, and in recent years has litigated cases in the UAE, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Oman, Bahrain, Algeria and Egypt, and further afield in China, Japan and Singapore.