Copyright © Media Law International 2020. All Rights Reserved.
Specialist Guide to the
Global Leaders in Media Law Practice
Bahrain’s legislative agenda for 2020 includes a new media law that will address digital media.
National reports outline that the law will deal with electronic media but will not address personal social media accounts as this area of content will be addressed separately.
The country’s Information Minister Ali Al Rumaihi spoke at the Fourth Power Forum at Bahrain University in December 2019.
Gulf Daily News quotes Mr Al Rumaihi saying: “The government has finished preparing a comprehensive law that tackles and covers everything with it being a matter of formalities to complete before the Cabinet approves it.”
He added: “It is not like Bahrain has been suffering from a legislative vacuum, we are covered through the Publications Law, but we believe there has to be progress that takes us beyond that.
Last year the country advanced its data protection regulation with the introduction of its Personal Data Protection Law based on GDPR principles.
The nation-wide law enacted by royal decree governs businesses and individuals who do not reside nationally but who have their data processed from the capital Manama.
Jeyapriya Partiban, Risk Consulting Partner at KPMG Bahrain, said: “All organisations in Bahrain will need to be aware of the requirements and specific stipulations of the law and will need to ensure that appropriate processes and protocols are in place to protect the personal and sensitive data of all their stakeholders.”
Elham Ali Hassan & Associates focusses on internet, media and IP. The firm’s leading position is backed by an established portfolio that includes clients such as Bloomberg and Apple. Managing partner Essa Jawahery takes the lead on media and technology matters and works closely with founding partner Elham Ali Hassan.
Full-service firm Haya Rashed Al Khalifa has played a key role in the establishment of regulatory bodies and the formation of regulation. The team’s media focus is broad, ranging from advice on commercial contracts, information management compliance and data protection to e-business and IT security. Founding partner Haya Rashed Al Khalifa is widely respected by peers who note her experience as a permanent delegate to the United Nations.
Zu'bi & Partners provides ‘a high calibre technical service’, according to clients. Practitioners are also praised for being consistently comprehensive and commercially-focussed. Working with his team, senior partner Qays H. Zu’bi advised on radio and television sub-license agreements and assisted a major multi-national internet corporation on local regulatory matters. The firm also acts for an Arabic language news channel on a range of corporate matters.
Media work at ASAR - Al Ruwayeh & Partners is driven by the firm’s focus on IP. The local team has built a reputable practice known for copyright protection, licensing and brand management. Cyber crime is among core focus areas for the cross-jurisdictional practice, which operates in Bahrain and Kuwait.
Hassan Radhi & Associates lawyers have established links with clients in neighbouring countries. Founding partner Hassan Ali Radhi has strong connections with international networks allowing for a multi-dimensional service that is primarily focussed on intellectual property.
International managing partner Dominic O’Neil leads the Trowers & Hamlins Bahrain office. Based in the jurisdiction, his local knowledge is praised by peers who highlight the firm’s regional dedication. The practice is supported by an international network of lawyers and dedicated media sector divisions.
Peers describe Zeenat Al Mansoori & Associates as an influential practice with industry focus and skill. Present in the Bahraini market since 1989, the full-service firm has a multi-disciplinary approach. Founding partner Zeenat Al Mansoori manages the media and telecommunications division, which works closely with the IP, IT and e-commence practice groups.
Charles Russell Speechlys opened its Bahrain office in 2006 and has since become an established part of the country’s legal structure. Patrick Gearon manages the practice which is backed by the firm’s 30-year TMT worldwide focus. The office benefits from Mr Gearon’s specialisation in media, IP, litigation and dispute resolution.
Established in 1979, Norton Rose Fulbright has become a trusted brand say competitors. Head of the Middle East practice Patrick Bourke manages the firm’s Bahrain, Dubai and Abu Dhabi offices, specialising in dispute resolution and litigation. The firm’s full-service focus and international network make it a leading choice for clients.
Elham Ali Hassan & Associates
Haya Rashed Al Khalifa
Zu’bi & Partners
ASAR - Al Ruwayeh & Partners
Hassan Radhi & Associates
Trowers & Hamlins
Zeenat Al Mansoori & Associates
Charles Russell Speechlys
Norton Rose Fulbright
Taqi & Moh'd Ahmed
RANKING AND EDITORIALS