Mais Abbas Abousy


Mais Abbas Abousy is an Attorney-Advisor with the Commercial Law Development Program (CLDP) in the Office of the General Counsel of the U.S. Department of Commerce.  Ms. Abousy primarily advises governments in the Middle East and North Africa on legal reform and economic development issues.
Prior to joining CLDP, Ms. Abousy was the Director of Programs at Karamah: Muslim Women Lawyers for Human Rights.  At Karamah, Ms. Abousy managed programs that advanced the rights of Muslim women from within their faith perspective, highlighting the equitable principles found in Islamic Jurisprudence.  During her programmatic efforts, she cultivated various networks, comprised of renowned international experts and leaders throughout the Middle East and North Africa.  Ms. Abousy also focused on the development of Alumni and network relations. As a native Arab speaker who grew up, in part, in Baghdad, Iraq, she has traveled extensively throughout the Middle East and North Africa. Ms. Abousy has a considerable understanding of the cultural and socioeconomic context of the region.  She also has experience in business management, civil litigation, and non-profit development.
Ms. Abousy earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Economics, with a minor in Political Science from George Mason University, and received a Juris Doctor from the Washington College of Law, American University, where she studied Islamic Law and emerging capital markets.  Ms. Abousy is fluent in Arabic and conversational in Spanish.

Upcoming Programs

February 21, 2018 - March 24, 2018

On February 21-22, 2018, CLDP held a workshop in cooperation with the World Trade Organization (WTO) Institute for Training and Technical Cooperation (ITTC) for officials from the Government of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan.  The workshop was held at the WTO Secretariat on the margins of the meetings of the Committee for Sanitary and Phytosanitary (SPS) measures and the Committee on Technical Barriers to Trade (TBT).   At the workshop, the Afghan officials discussed with U.S. and WTO experts the procedural and substantive requirements of the WTO SPS and TBT Agreements, and methods for effective engagement in SPS and TBT Committees.  WTO experts also presented on the online tools made available to WTO members by the Secretariat to facilitate timely notifications. 

Following the workshops, the Afghan officials participated in the WTO SPS and TBT Committees, ensuring that Afghanistan has a more active role on issues critical to Afghanistan's trade sector, and provides answers to questions posed by SPS Committee members. 

March 10, 2018 - March 17, 2018

On March 10-15, CLDP hosted a high-level delegation from the Ministry of Mines and Petroleum of Afghanistan (MoMP) in Washington, DC. Her Excellency Nargis Nehan, Acting Minister of the Ministry of Mines and Petroleum, headed the Afghan delegation in the U.S.  CLDP facilitated meetings for the Afghan delegation with U.S. Government agencies and the private sector.  During the meetings, MoMP’s representatives provided a comprehensive update on the current state of the Afghan extractive sector, while reinforcing the commitment of the Afghan government to reforms required to transition the extractive sector to a competitive and efficient market.  The MoMP’s representatives also provided an overview of potential mining projects and sought the private sector’s input on how to make the Afghan extractive industry more attractive to foreign private investment, as well as explained the ministry’s commitment to capacity building. In response, CLDP formally launched a 15 months-long extractive training course, designed for key technical and legal employees within the ministry.  

CLDP in Action

February 27, 2018 - March 2, 2018

CLDP together with its institutional partner Extractive Resources Governance Program (ERGP) at the University of Calgary’s School of Public Policy, co-hosted a workshop of 13 officials from Pakistan on Establishing an Effective and Independent Regulator in Calgary, Alberta, Canada. 

Read More about Pakistan: Upstream Regulator Workshop