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Hdeel Abdelhady
Principal
Email
T: +1 (202) 630-2512

Biography

Hdeel Abdelhady is MassPoint PLLC's founder and principal.  She works with U.S. and non-U.S. clients on  transactions (conventional and Islamic) and counsels clients on sanctions, anti-financial crime, and international trade compliance.  In the trade area, Ms. Abdelhady focuses on established and evolving law, regulation, and policy pertaining to emerging technologies such as artificial intelligence, additive manufacturing, and battery technology.

Prior to founding MassPoint PLLC, Ms. Abdelhady practiced law with two major U.S.-based law firms, and has served as secondment counsel to two banks, in Washington, D.C. and in Dubai.  Ms. Abdelhady is a part-time Professorial Lecturer in Law at The George Washington University Law School.  She created and teaches a course on Regulation of Foreign Access to U.S. Technology, which covers the continuum of U.S. regulations affecting the science and technology continuum, from academic research to inbound investment to exports.  Ms. Abdelhady also teaches Introduction to Transactional Law.

Ms. Abdelhady publishes frequently in her areas of practice and academic instruction.  Her writings have appeared in, among other publications, the World Bank Legal Review, Butterworths Journal of International Banking and Financial Law, the Sustainable Law and Development Journal, Law360, Reuters, and Ahram Online.

  • Fellow of the American Bar Foundation
  • Member, Board of Directors, Association of Certified Financial Crime Specialists, DC Chapter
  • Member, ABA Task Force on Gatekeeper Regulation and the Profession
  • MassPoint PLLC, Corporate Law Firm of the Year, USA, Finance Monthly Global Awards
  • Corporate: M&A and Governance, Who’s Who Legal 2016 
  • Past Co-Chair, ABA Middle East Committee

JD, The George Washington University Law School 

  • Member, Moot Court Executive Board
  • Chairwoman, Van Vleck Constitutional Law Moot Court Competition
  • “Best Overall Competitor” and “Best Oralist” awards, Van Vleck Constitutional Law Moot Court competition
  • Class of 2002 Clinics Volunteer Service Award
  • President, Street Law Student Association
  • Law Clerk, U.S. Department of Justice, Civil Rights Division
  • Judicial Intern, Superior Court of the District of Columbia

BA; Political Science, History (Middle East and Africa), University of Pittsburgh

  • District of Columbia
  • Commonwealth of Virginia
  • State of Maryland
  • United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit
  • World Bank Group Can be Sued for “Commercial Activity” Says SCOTUS (Jam/IFC), MassPoint PLLC, March 2019.
  • ISIS’ Islamic Stagecraft,” Ahram Weekly, October 2017 (or read the reader-friendly PDF here).
  • Editor, 2015 Middle East Legal Developments in Review (Advance Copy), American Bar Association Section of International Law Middle East Committee.
  • Harmonization of Global Sales Law, UNCITRAL Asia Pacific Incheon Spring Conferences, Incheon, South Korea, June 2015.
  • The CISG in Foreign Legal Systems (or not), Speaker, United Nations Commission on International Trade Law – Georgetown Law Global Sales Law Conference: The CISG at 35: Challenges Today, Washington, D.C., January 2o15.
  • Egypt’s New Investment Law Misses the Mark, Ahram Online, June 4, 2014.
  • The Selective Piety of Egypt’s Islamists, Ahram Online, June 23, 2013.
  • The Real Revolution Underway in Egypt, Ahram Online, December 2012.
  • Rule of Law in Egypt; Challenges for Democracy, Moderator, Aspen Institute, Washington, D.C. 2011, September 22, 2011.
  • Pillars of a Modern and Democratic Egyptian Constitution, Egypt Revolution Conference, Washington, D.C., October 21, 2011.
  • Egypt Needs a Mindset Revolution (to transition economically), Ahram Weekly, October 6, 2011.
  • Egypt’s Prosecutor General Must Advance the Rule of Law, Ahram Online July 25, 2011.
  • Partners for Change: Realizing the Potential of Arab Women in the Private and Public Sectors, Arab International Women’s Forum, World Bank, Washington, D.C., June 2008.
  • The Impact of Islam in the Constitution of Iraq, Public International Law & Policy Group Roundtable Series on Next Steps for Implementing the Iraq Constitution, Washington, D.C., January 2006.
  • The Impact of Islam in the Constitution of Iraq, Public International Law & Policy Group Roundtable Series on Next Steps for Implementing the Iraq Constitution, Washington, D.C., January 2006.
  • Issues in Federalism: Negotiation Simulation on the Formation of Regions in Iraq, Public International Law & Policy Group Roundtable Series on Next Steps for Implementing the Iraq Constitution, Washington, D.C., January 2006.
  • Investor-State Dispute Prevention: Egypt, Presentation for the International Finance Corporation, the Egyptian Ministry of Justice, and the Egyptian General Authority for Investment, Washington, D.C. 2013.
  • Go Global, Grow Local: Positioning the DC Metro Area to Tap the Global Aspiration Economy, The 2030 Group Blog 2012.
  • Montgomery County Today: Changing Community and Transformative Opportunity, Co-organizer and speaker (program on health sector growth) 2012.
  • Islamic Finance as a Mechanism for Bolstering Food Security in the Middle East: Food Security Waqf, Eighth International Conference on Islamic Economics and Finance, Doha, Qatar 2011.
  • Middle East Economic Outlook, Interview with Chief Economist of the DIFC, Interviewer, ABA Islamic Finance Committee Podcast, DIFC (Dubai), UAE 2010.
  • China-Africa Trade and Investment: Is it a Two-Way Street?, Program Writer and Chair, Washington, D.C., 2007.
  • Foreign Direct Investment and Investment Dispute Settlement, International Dispute Resolution for the Washington, D.C. Diplomatic Community, Washington, D.C., June 2006.
  • Investment Risks in International Oil and Gas Contracts, Conference on Managing Risk in International Oil and Gas Contracts (under the auspices of the Egyptian Ministry of Petroleum), Cairo Regional Centre for International Commercial Arbitration, Cairo, Egypt, May 2006; Conference on Managing Risk in International Oil and Gas Contracts (under the auspices of the Libyan National Oil Company), Tripoli, Libya, May 2006.

Hdeel Abdelhady Quoted on U.S. Election Impact on Foreign Investment

Hdeel Abdelhady was quoted in Islamic Finance News, on the potential impact of the U.S. Election outcome on Islamic finance and investment in the United States. She said: “Trump’s rhetoric and proposals — such as the ‘Muslim ban’ (which is legally problematic and impracticable) and other politically opportunistic invocations of Islam and Muslims — would likely carry over and create an inhospitable environment for Islamic finance, including because Trump’s candidacy appears to have normalized, in some quarters, anti-Muslim, anti-‘other’ speech and conduct . . . even if Trump — a self-styled ‘dealmaker’ — were inclined to support wholly or partially Islamic investments in the US (such as the CityCenterDC mixed use development located less than a mile from both Trump’s recently opened DC hotel and the address to which he aspires, 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue), the atmosphere and supporters he has cultivated as a candidate would likely be impediments.”
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Thumbnail Of Iran Issues For Business After Partial Sanctions Relief And U.S. Elections.lng

IRAN AFTER PARTIAL SANCTIONS RELIEF AND U.S. ELECTIONS

MassPoint PLLC, with the American Bar Association Section of International Law and Bryan Cave LLP, are sponsoring a program entitled "Iran After Partial Sanctions Relief and U.S. Elections: Legal, Risk, and Practical Issues for Business." Hdeel Abdelhady, who wrote and organized the program, will serve as moderator.
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Senate Bill Makes it Easier to Litigate Against State-Owned Enterprises in U.S. Courts

To deprive SOEs of the tactical advantage of asserting sovereign immunity in U.S. courts, Senator Chuck Grassley (R-IA) introduced on September 14 the State-Owned Entity Transparency and Accountability Reform (STAR) Act of 2016, "a bill to improve the Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act of 1976, and for other purposes." Specifically, the STAR Act would remove a level of specificity required to link a specific legal entity to commercial activity by amending the FSIA to make “commercial activity . . . attributable to any corporate affiliate of the agency or instrumentality that (A) directly or indirectly owns a majority of shares . . . and (B) is also an agency or instrumentality of a foreign state.”
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Muhammad Ali: Self-Made Man and Internationalist Who Was Beloved in the Middle East Made His Mark on American Law

It has been reported that Muhammad Ali’s final resting place is marked with a gravestone that bears only his name. “In keeping with [the] Muslim tradition” of simple funerary practices, “there are no dates or loving tributes.” This is most appropriate, as Muhammad Ali needs no special inscriptions or tributes. The name he chose for himself as a young man is the epitaph that describes him best. “Worthy of all praises, most high.”
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Do State Regulators Have Authority to Enforce OFAC Sanctions?

The enforcement of OFAC-administered sanctions by a state agency—even against banks by a banking regulator operating in a dual banking system—raises fundamental constitutional and other legal questions. Chief among them is the overarching question of whether U.S. states have authority to directly or effectively enforce OFAC-administered sanctions, particularly independently and prior to enforcement by competent federal authorities—namely OFAC. This question and some of the legal issues and policy and practical considerations appertaining to it are discussed in detail in a forthcoming publication. This document provides a summary preview of some of the key legal issues discussed in that publication. Additional summary previews may be provided separately.
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Foreign Investment in U.S. Agriculture Under Scrutiny

The 2013 sale of American pork producer and processer Smithfield Foods to China’s Shuanghui International aroused concern among some U.S. lawmakers. The $4.7 billion deal ($7.1 billion including debt), was and remains the largest acquisition of a U.S. business by a Chinese entity. This year, some U.S. lawmakers are again raising concerns about a Chinese firm’s acquisition of an agricultural company: the proposed $43 billion acquisition by state-owned China National Chemical Corporation (ChemChina) of Syngetna AG , the Swiss agrochemicals company that does substantial business in the United States. If completed, the Syngenta deal would “transform ChemChina into the world’s biggest supplier of pesticides and agrochemicals.”With Chinese buyers, record-setting deals, and industry-leading acquisition targets in the mix, the Smithfield and Syngenta transactions provide the ingredients needed to stir media interest and controversy about foreign investment in and affecting the United States. Beyond deal optics, a more interesting, strategically-oriented, and potentially consequential policy and public discourse about foreign investment in U.S. agriculture is emerging in the United States, at least in some quarters
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U.S. Sectoral Sanctions Targeting Russian Financial Services: OFAC Directive 1

Among those added to the SSIL on July 30 are the Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF) and other entities identified by OFAC as being owned 50% or more by Russian state development bank Vnesheconombank (VEB). VEB itself was added to the SSIL on July 16, 2014, the same day on which OFAC first issued Directive 1, the relevant financial services sanctions implementing measure discussed in detail below (as applicable to the VEB-owned entitles and generally). The July 30 action is significant more for its likely practical impact, rather than its immediate legal meaning. This is so because the relevant VEB-owned entities, while not previously listed on the SSIL, have nevertheless been subject to Sectoral Sanctions since July 16, 2014.[iii] The VEB’s sanctioned status as of July 16, 2014 was imputed to its owned entities on the same day by operation of OFAC’s “50% Rule,” which attaches to entities owned 50% or more by one or more SSIL entities (individually or in the aggregate) the sanctions status of their owner(s), even if such owned entities are not separately listed on the SSIL. The 50% Rule significantly expands the potential scope of Sectoral Sanctions and corresponding compliance obligations. Effectively, the 50% Rule requires parties to determine, at every link in the ownership chain (vertically and horizontally), whether one or more SSIL entities (alone or in the aggregate) directly or indirectly owns 50% or more of a relevant entity. This can be particularly burdensome where corporate structures are complex and/or opaque.
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