Law Reforms in Transition Economies

Combining decades of experience as a professor of international and comparative law and international arbitration, as well as corporate counsel, Georges Affaki has led numerous international law reforms projects. He has led rule-drafting projects that resulted in globally accepted standards in the relevant sectors. The rules he has drafted are now used in trade and secured finance both in the developed and developing world. The international background of AFFAKI’s team allows it to bridge cultural and legal gaps, with a particular focus on the MENA region.

Both in his academic research and his professional practice, Georges Affaki has acted as an arbitrator, expert, and counsel in disputes arising out of sovereign debt rescheduling and international debt recovery by investment funds. As a result of this work, he is considered a leading expert in advising sovereign States and creditors on such complex proceedings.

Georges Affaki is a frequent speaker on Arab and Islamic laws, as well as on increasing access to secured finance in the developing world.

Significant Mandates
  • As a consultant to the World Bank’s International Finance Corporation (IFC), conducting an independent assessment of the secured transaction law reform project in Morocco, involving the analysis of the existing legislative system, its benchmarking against international standards, multiple meetings with the local and the international stakeholders, and issuing a final neutral opinion.
  • As a consultant to the World Bank’s Foreign Investment Advisory Services (FIAS), advising on the drafting and the enactment of the OHADA Uniform Act on Secured Transactions (adopted 15 December 2010 in Lomé).
  • As a member of the UNCITRAL Working Group VI, co-drafting the Model Law on Secured Transactions.
  • As Chair of the ICC Task Force on Guarantees, Professor Dr Affaki chaired the drafting group for the Uniform Rules for Demand Guarantees (URDG), which were universally adopted and entered into force on 1 July 2010, followed by the co-drafting (with Sir Roy Goode) of the leading commentary on the rules.
  • Advising numerous central banks and international organisations (including the World Bank, FIDIC, and WCO) on the adoption of the URDG in their standard guarantee templates.
  • Chairing the drafting group for Dispute Resolution by Expertise in Trade Finance Disputes (DOCDEX), adopted December 2014.
  • Chairing the Paris Europlace group on Applicable Law and Dispute Resolution in Islamic Finance. The Group delivered its report in June 2009. The report was translated into English and Arabic and has been the subject of a number of articles and comments in law reviews.
    View Islamic Finance Report (English)
    View Islamic Finance Report (French)
    View Islamic Finance Report (Arabic)
  • As consultant to the International Trade Center (WTO/UNCTAD), drafting a report on access to credit in transition economies and a report on trade finance (awarded the European Prize for Interdisciplinary Research). Both missions were followed by an extensive series of conferences and training workshops in the developing world.
  • As in-house counsel, acting for a major financial institution in structuring secured financing in trade transactions with emerging markets, often involving the participation or the guarantee of the World Bank’s specialist agencies, those of another multilateral financial institution, or a national export credit agency.
  • Both in his academic research and his professional practice, Professor Dr Affaki was involved as expert or in-house counsel in matters arising out of sovereign debt rescheduling and international debt recovery litigation initiated by vulture funds. Professor Dr Affaki’s experience has resulted in him being considered a leading expert in advising on litigation strategy in these types of complex proceedings.
  • Fluent in Arabic and well-versed in the culture of the Arab countries with a particular expertise in Shari’a as it relates to finance, Georges Affaki frequently represents clients in investments, commercial contracts, and disputes involving Arab countries and/or Arab laws.
Publications
  • “Case Studies in Documentary Credits and Bank Guarantees”, International Trade Center (Geneva), UNCTAD/WTO, 2013.
  • “Guide to ICC Uniform Rules for Demand Guarantees” (with Sir Roy Goode), ICC Publishing, 2011.
  • “Increasing Access to Credit – Reforming Secured Transaction Law”, International Trade Center (Geneva), UNCTAD/WTO, 2010.
  • “Paiements et sûretés dans le commerce international”, International Trade Center (Geneva), CNUCED/OMC, 2002, Winner of the European Prize for Interdisciplinary Research (2002). Translated into Spanish: Financiaciones y garantias en el comercio internacional, 2003, and into English: Trade Finance, 2004.
  • “A User’s Handbook to the Uniform Rules for Demand Guarantees”, ICC Publishing S.A., publication No. 631, 2001.
  • “La Chari’a en dehors des terres d’Islam: Essai sur la reception de la finance islamique en France”, Revue internationale de droit comparé, No.3, 2014.
  • “Nouvelles tendances de l’arbitrage international en Afrique : Le cas des litiges financiers” (avec A. Koenig), Revue de l’arbitrage, No.3, 2014.
  • “Revisiting the Pari Passu clause”, in Sovereign Debt Management, R. Lastra and L. Buchheit (Eds.), OUP, 2014, pp. 39-49.
  • “L’accueil de la finance islamique en droit français – essai sur le transfert d’un système normatif”, in La finance islamique, J.P. Laramée (ed.), Secure Finance, 2008.
  • “Du bon sens et du sens des mots: de la bonne interprétation de la clause pari passu”, in Essays in honour of Philippe Letourneau, Dalloz, 2007.
  • “Le nouveau droit des crédits documentaires”, Banque & Droit, No. 112 – mars 2007, pp. 3-22.
  • “Analysis of obstacles to the proper functioning of the internal market: legal, economic and social aspects”, in Divergences of property law, an obstacle to the internal market?, U. Drobnig, H. Snijders and E. Zippro Ed., Sellier, 2006.
  • “Des aspects bancaires dans le guide législatif de la CNUDCI sur les opérations garanties”, in Réforme des sûretés mobilières, B. Foex (ed.), Schulthess, 2006.
  • “De la relation perfectible entre le crédit et les sûretés”, in Repenser le droit des sûretés mobilières, M-E. Ancel (ed.), 2005, LGDJ.
  • “De la relation perfectible entre le crédit et les sûretés”, Banque & Droit, No. 97 – September 2004, pp. 26-34.
  • “Progress in the use of the Uniform Rules for Demand Guarantees”, Documentary Credits Insight, Vol.9 No.3, 2003, pp.17-19.
  • “L’apport de la Convention CNUDCI sur la cession de créances aux opérations de banque”, Banque et droit, n°90, 2003, pp. 3-36.
  • “Documentary dialogue with W.T.A. Riddall”, Documentary Credits Insight, Vol. 7 No.1, 2001, pp.14-17, and Vol.7 No.2, 2001, pp.15-17.
  • “Les sûretés dans le négoce international”, Journal du droit international (Clunet), No.3, 2000, pp. 647-708.
  • “Promoting the Uniform Rules for Demand Guarantees”, Letter of Credit Update, 1999, Vol. 15 No.7.
  • “ISP, UCP or URDG : What are the Optimal Rules for your Undertaking ?”, Documentary Credit World, Vol. 3, No.6, June 1999.
  • “The ISP98, the UCP, the URDG and the UNCITRAL Convention : Are they really complementary? ”, Letter of Credit Update, Vol. 15 No.5, May 1999, pp.20-22.
  • “How do the ISP standby rules fit in with other uniform rules?”, Documentary Credits Insight, Vol.5 No.1, 1998, pp.3-6.
  • “Demand Guarantees in the Arab countries”, Journal of International Banking Law, [1997], Vol. 12, Issue 7, pp. 271-276.
  • Chapter on Documentary credits, in Letters of Credit, Michael Rowe (Ed.), 2nd edition, 1997, Euromoney.
  • Chapter on countertrade, in Countertrade, Michael Rowe (Ed.), 3rd edition, 1997, Euromoney.
  • “Islamic Banking: an overview”, Documentary Credits Insight, No.2, 1996, pp. 9-11.
  • “Les garanties indépendantes sont-elles encore indépendantes? Leçons de la crise du Golfe ”, Banque & Droit, 1994, No.33, pp.3-12.
  • “International fast-track commercial arbitration in the Arab countries”, in Dispute Resolution Methods, Comparative Law Yearbook for International Business, 1994, Graham & Trotman, Martinus Nijhof, pp.368-387.
  • “La loi n°10 sur la promotion des investissements en Syrie ”, Revue de Droit des Affaires Internationales, 1992, No.4, pp.371-387; later updated and published in International Business Lawyer, [1992] Vol.20–No.10, pp.518-524.
  • “The duty to interfere: a new measure to prevent the payment of independent guarantees”, Journal of International Banking Law, [1991], Vol.6–No.11, pp.457-464.

Download a complete list of publications in pdf.

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Significant Mandates

  • As a consultant to the World Bank’s International Finance Corporation (IFC), conducting an independent assessment of the secured transaction law reform project in Morocco, involving the analysis of the existing legislative system, its benchmarking against international standards, multiple meetings with the local and the international stakeholders, and issuing a final neutral opinion.
  • As a consultant to the World Bank’s Foreign Investment Advisory Services (FIAS), advising on the drafting and the enactment of the OHADA Uniform Act on Secured Transactions (adopted 15 December 2010 in Lomé).
  • As a member of the UNCITRAL Working Group VI, co-drafting the Model Law on Secured Transactions.
  • As Chair of the ICC Task Force on Guarantees, Professor Dr Affaki chaired the drafting group for the Uniform Rules for Demand Guarantees (URDG), which were universally adopted and entered into force on 1 July 2010, followed by the co-drafting (with Sir Roy Goode) of the leading commentary on the rules.
  • Advising numerous central banks and international organisations (including the World Bank, FIDIC, and WCO) on the adoption of the URDG in their standard guarantee templates.
  • Chairing the drafting group for Dispute Resolution by Expertise in Trade Finance Disputes (DOCDEX), adopted December 2014.
  • Chairing the Paris Europlace group on Applicable Law and Dispute Resolution in Islamic Finance. The Group delivered its report in June 2009. The report was translated into English and Arabic and has been the subject of a number of articles and comments in law reviews.
    View Islamic Finance Report (English)
    View Islamic Finance Report (French)
    View Islamic Finance Report (Arabic)
  • As consultant to the International Trade Center (WTO/UNCTAD), drafting a report on access to credit in transition economies and a report on trade finance (awarded the European Prize for Interdisciplinary Research). Both missions were followed by an extensive series of conferences and training workshops in the developing world.
  • As in-house counsel, acting for a major financial institution in structuring secured financing in trade transactions with emerging markets, often involving the participation or the guarantee of the World Bank’s specialist agencies, those of another multilateral financial institution, or a national export credit agency.
  • Both in his academic research and his professional practice, Professor Dr Affaki was involved as expert or in-house counsel in matters arising out of sovereign debt rescheduling and international debt recovery litigation initiated by vulture funds. Professor Dr Affaki’s experience has resulted in him being considered a leading expert in advising on litigation strategy in these types of complex proceedings.
  • Fluent in Arabic and well-versed in the culture of the Arab countries with a particular expertise in Shari’a as it relates to finance, Georges Affaki frequently represents clients in investments, commercial contracts, and disputes involving Arab countries and/or Arab laws.

Publications

  • “Case Studies in Documentary Credits and Bank Guarantees”, International Trade Center (Geneva), UNCTAD/WTO, 2013.
  • “Guide to ICC Uniform Rules for Demand Guarantees” (with Sir Roy Goode), ICC Publishing, 2011.
  • “Increasing Access to Credit – Reforming Secured Transaction Law”, International Trade Center (Geneva), UNCTAD/WTO, 2010.
  • “Paiements et sûretés dans le commerce international”, International Trade Center (Geneva), CNUCED/OMC, 2002, Winner of the European Prize for Interdisciplinary Research (2002). Translated into Spanish: Financiaciones y garantias en el comercio internacional, 2003, and into English: Trade Finance, 2004.
  • “A User’s Handbook to the Uniform Rules for Demand Guarantees”, ICC Publishing S.A., publication No. 631, 2001.
  • “La Chari’a en dehors des terres d’Islam: Essai sur la reception de la finance islamique en France”, Revue internationale de droit comparé, No.3, 2014.
  • “Nouvelles tendances de l’arbitrage international en Afrique : Le cas des litiges financiers” (avec A. Koenig), Revue de l’arbitrage, No.3, 2014.
  • “Revisiting the Pari Passu clause”, in Sovereign Debt Management, R. Lastra and L. Buchheit (Eds.), OUP, 2014, pp. 39-49.
  • “L’accueil de la finance islamique en droit français – essai sur le transfert d’un système normatif”, in La finance islamique, J.P. Laramée (ed.), Secure Finance, 2008.
  • “Du bon sens et du sens des mots: de la bonne interprétation de la clause pari passu”, in Essays in honour of Philippe Letourneau, Dalloz, 2007.
  • “Le nouveau droit des crédits documentaires”, Banque & Droit, No. 112 – mars 2007, pp. 3-22.
  • “Analysis of obstacles to the proper functioning of the internal market: legal, economic and social aspects”, in Divergences of property law, an obstacle to the internal market?, U. Drobnig, H. Snijders and E. Zippro Ed., Sellier, 2006.
  • “Des aspects bancaires dans le guide législatif de la CNUDCI sur les opérations garanties”, in Réforme des sûretés mobilières, B. Foex (ed.), Schulthess, 2006.
  • “De la relation perfectible entre le crédit et les sûretés”, in Repenser le droit des sûretés mobilières, M-E. Ancel (ed.), 2005, LGDJ.
  • “De la relation perfectible entre le crédit et les sûretés”, Banque & Droit, No. 97 – September 2004, pp. 26-34.
  • “Progress in the use of the Uniform Rules for Demand Guarantees”, Documentary Credits Insight, Vol.9 No.3, 2003, pp.17-19.
  • “L’apport de la Convention CNUDCI sur la cession de créances aux opérations de banque”, Banque et droit, n°90, 2003, pp. 3-36.
  • “Documentary dialogue with W.T.A. Riddall”, Documentary Credits Insight, Vol. 7 No.1, 2001, pp.14-17, and Vol.7 No.2, 2001, pp.15-17.
  • “Les sûretés dans le négoce international”, Journal du droit international (Clunet), No.3, 2000, pp. 647-708.
  • “Promoting the Uniform Rules for Demand Guarantees”, Letter of Credit Update, 1999, Vol. 15 No.7.
  • “ISP, UCP or URDG : What are the Optimal Rules for your Undertaking ?”, Documentary Credit World, Vol. 3, No.6, June 1999.
  • “The ISP98, the UCP, the URDG and the UNCITRAL Convention : Are they really complementary? ”, Letter of Credit Update, Vol. 15 No.5, May 1999, pp.20-22.
  • “How do the ISP standby rules fit in with other uniform rules?”, Documentary Credits Insight, Vol.5 No.1, 1998, pp.3-6.
  • “Demand Guarantees in the Arab countries”, Journal of International Banking Law, [1997], Vol. 12, Issue 7, pp. 271-276.
  • Chapter on Documentary credits, in Letters of Credit, Michael Rowe (Ed.), 2nd edition, 1997, Euromoney.
  • Chapter on countertrade, in Countertrade, Michael Rowe (Ed.), 3rd edition, 1997, Euromoney.
  • “Islamic Banking: an overview”, Documentary Credits Insight, No.2, 1996, pp. 9-11.
  • “Les garanties indépendantes sont-elles encore indépendantes? Leçons de la crise du Golfe ”, Banque & Droit, 1994, No.33, pp.3-12.
  • “International fast-track commercial arbitration in the Arab countries”, in Dispute Resolution Methods, Comparative Law Yearbook for International Business, 1994, Graham & Trotman, Martinus Nijhof, pp.368-387.
  • “La loi n°10 sur la promotion des investissements en Syrie ”, Revue de Droit des Affaires Internationales, 1992, No.4, pp.371-387; later updated and published in International Business Lawyer, [1992] Vol.20–No.10, pp.518-524.
  • “The duty to interfere: a new measure to prevent the payment of independent guarantees”, Journal of International Banking Law, [1991], Vol.6–No.11, pp.457-464.

Download complete list of publications in pdf.