HFI supports our clients to establish, expand and divest their businesses through strategic, value-added consulting and legal services, combining specialist know-how, connections, local partners and execution expertise. Our focus is on ventures which combine advanced energy technology and know-how with opportunities in the Middle East, East Mediterranean/North Africa, Caspian/Central Asia, East Africa and India regional zones including new in-country businesses, joint ventures and acquisitions.

Specialist Services

Our Joint Participation Ventures Initiative is focussed on executing collaboration contracts and joint ventures between international technology and know-how partners and in-country local partners across a range of key energy-driven territories in the Middle East and the four surrounding regions: the East Mediterranean & North Africa, the Caspian & Central Asia, the Indian sub-continent and East Africa. In this “Middle East Plus 4” focus area, we advise and execute on partner selection, due diligence, commercial terms, in-country laws & regulations and legalisation, translation, registration formalities.  We also support trouble-shooting for, and managed exits from, existing ventures. 

Our DMCC Corporate & Compliance Solutions is focussed on the use of DMCC free zone companies as an integral part of Middle East and wider international group structures in support of clients’ business expansion plans. The United Arab Emirates in the heart of a global energy market valued at US$5 trillion in recent research by the Energy Industries Council -EIC. The DMCC free zone is now recognised as a world-class cluster of energy sector companies adjacent to some of the largest energy producing nations and energy consuming markets in the Middle East, Europe, Africa and Asia. DMCC companies are used increasingly as regional hub group entities and, in this context, we provide specialist consulting, licensing, registration and compliance services through the full life-cycle from establishment to divestment.

Our MASDAR Corporate & Compliance Solutions specialises in the use of the MASDAR City Free Zone initiative, which is led by Mubadala Investments, for businesses with advanced net zero technologies and know-how who are looking to expand in the Middle East region and on a wider international platform. MASDAR is now recognised as a world-class cluster for net zero businesses with the International Renewable Energy Agency - IRENA now based in Abu Dhabi and is a key pillar of the Abu Dhabi Economic Vision 2030 and the UAE Energy Strategy 2050. Abu Dhabi is also host to the annual World Future Energy Summit. In this context, HFI provides specialist consulting, licensing, registration and compliance services and has recently supported the establishment of the Global Carbon and Capture Institute at the free zone.

Our International Local Partner Agreements Initiative is focussed on executing commercial agency and distribution agreements in the Middle East, East Mediterranean/North Africa, India and East Africa regions. In 2021 HFI launched our upgraded dual language agency agreement for Middle East ventures built on specialist contract automation software and reflects 20 years’ of know-how and experience in formulating, re-booting and terminating local partner agreements in the region. The upgrade is our biggest overhaul to date and reflects lessons learned from clients’ experiences and legal developments in regional laws over the last 5 years. The success or failure of ventures can depend on building win/win commercial arrangements while managing the legal risks associated with regional legal agreements. Key issues to manage include understanding how local laws can over-ride commercial contract terms, ensuing dual English/Arabic language issues are properly addressed and administering the execution, legalisation and registration formalities associated with regional commercial agencies. Variations of the Agency Agreement, with associated specialist consulting and implementation services,  are available for the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Oman, Kuwait, Iraq, Egypt, India and other key territories in the target regions.

Key Territories

Our Abu Dhabi Ventures Initiative supports corporate ventures which are centred on advanced petroleum technology and energy transition ventures relating to ADNOC-driven opportunities in the United Arab Emirates. Although this primary relates to “onshore” ventures, this initiative also extends to renewables and clean energy ventures under the Abu Dhabi Economic Vision 2030 and UAE Energy Strategy 2050 and we offer a MASDAR Corporate & Compliance Solutions service in relation to the MASDAR City Free Zone initiative which is led by Mubadala Investments. Key elements of the ADVI relate to foreign direct investment, local partner, licensing, companies law, employment, in-country value and ADNOC vendor registration requirements. 

Our Saudi Arabia Ventures Initiative supports corporate ventures which are centred on advanced petroleum technology and energy transition ventures relating to Aramco-driven opportunities in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and its offshore territories in the Gulf and Red Sea. These opportunities are driven by the massive Aramco investment programme and the diversification objectives of the Saudi Arabia Economic Vision 2030. Key elements of the SAVI relate to foreign direct investment, local partner, licensing, companies law, employment, IKTVA (In-Kingdom Total Value Added) localisation and Aramco/SABIC vendor registration requirements.

Our Egypt Ventures Initiative supports client opportunities arising from the transformation of Egypt from a declining oil producer to a regional energy hub, driven by deepwater gas projects in the Eastern Mediterranean with a stable gas-fuelled power production network and increasing solar and wind renewables capability supported by a new feed-in tariff regime introduced in 2016.  The US$1billion exploration awards for the Mediterranean and Red Sea made in January, the Suez Canal Economic Zone initiative, African Continental Free Trade Agreement and Cairo-based East Mediterranean Gas Forum are all adding further drivers to Egypt’s growing energy hub status.

EGVI, in collaboration with our in-country legal network advisors, supports all aspects in the planning, funding, implementation, acquisition and divestment of energy ventures for Egypt including energy and environmental laws and policies, foreign investment laws, business licensing and registration, joint ventures and commercial agencies, taxation, employment laws, intellectual property licensing and protection, investment and financing agreements, land acquisition and development for energy projects, procurement and vendor registration policies and legal compliance.  

Our India Ventures Initiative targets the key global energy transition “battleground” – recognised in the International Energy Agency’s India Energy Outlook 2021 - as we look towards the world in 2050. India’s population, energy demand and CO2 emissions are set to increase dramatically over the next generation and with that scenario brings huge challenges. It also brings huge net zero opportunities in solar, wind, carbon capture linked to power generation and industrial facilities, battery storage, electrification of vehicles and trains, robust electricity distribution grids, domestic natural gas production, energy efficiency, green hydrogen and electrolysers, and blue hydrogen.

Our INDVI supports all aspects in the planning, funding, implementation, acquisition and divestment of energy ventures for India including energy and environmental laws and policies, foreign investment laws, business licensing and registration, joint ventures, taxation, employment laws, intellectual property licensing and protection, investment and financing agreements, land acquisition and development for energy projects, procurement and vendor registration policies and legal compliance.  

Our Qatar Ventures Initiative centres on both the onshore and offshore energy opportunities in Qatar, driven by the massive US$30 billion North Field Extension (NFE) development project awarded in early 2021. This will consolidate and expand Qatar’s position as a leading LNG producer and exporter, rising from 77 million tonnes per annum, to 110 mtpa and then on to 126 mtpa by the end of the decade. The NFE will involve one of the region’s largest carbon capture facilities. Qatar has been experiencing a construction projects boom as the country heads towards hosting the FIFA World Cup in 2022.

QATVI in association with our local network legal partners, supports all aspects in the planning, funding, implementation, acquisition and divestment of energy ventures for Qatar including energy and environmental laws and policies, foreign investment laws, business licensing and registration, joint ventures and commercial agencies, taxation, employment laws, intellectual property licensing and protection, investment and financing agreements, land acquisition and development for energy projects, procurement and vendor registration policies and legal compliance.

We also support corporate ventures in other key territories in the “Middle East Plus 4” area including Qatar, Kuwait, Oman, Iraq, Egypt, Kazakhstan and India.