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Everybody loves Dubai. Patton Boggs plans to launch a project office in November in the rapidly growing United Arab Emirates city, and it will be home to the second base in the Middle East for the D.C. firm. “We have a client over there with a large assignment for us, and in order to meet the needs of the client, we’ve agreed to open up a project office,” says Stuart Pape, managing partner of Patton Boggs. Pape wouldn’t name the client, but he says the assignment is related to real estate and should account for about two years’ worth of work. But Patton Boggs might be interested in sticking around longer, depending on client interests, of course. “I think we will put our toes in the water and see what the temperature is,” says Pape. Real estate partner Raymond Termini, who is in the firm’s Dallas office, will relocate to Dubai to head up the new venture, where he will be joined by a senior associate. Patton Boggs became the first U.S. firm to set up shop in neighboring Qatar when it made its debut there in 2003, citing long-standing work for the Qatari government as a prime motive behind the move. Patton Boggs has been given a license to practice by the Dubai International Finance Center. The project office is expected to initially operate from temporary space. Patton Boggs is the latest in a line of American firms to make a move to Dubai. Two weeks ago, Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher also announced plans to open an office in the Middle Eastern state and expects it to be up and running by the end of the year. Other firms that have opened offices there include DLA Piper, King & Spalding, Reed Smith, and Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld.
Attila Berry can be contacted at [email protected]. Caroline Grimshaw is a reporter with Legal Week , an Incisive Media publication.

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