Outside of the common law and civil law legal traditions, what is termed “Islamic law” forms one of the world’s largest legal systems. There are more than one billion Muslims world-wide, and millions of those Muslims populate some of the world’s richest trading zones. As of 2005, the Gulf Cooperation Council (G.C.C.), comprised of Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Bahrain, Qatar, Oman, and the United Arab Emirates, was the United States’ fifth largest trading partner.

In this time of rapid globalization, it is imperative that an attorney from the United States, who works in international commerce, understands the commercial law of this influential region. As the emerging markets of the Middle East continue to grow, the ability to trade goods internationally will help to solidify these ever increasing economic ties. This paper attempts to explain the theories and thought processes surrounding contracts for the sale of goods in Muslim countries. My purpose is to describe the important similarities and differences between commercial contracts in the United States and commercial contracts in Muslim countries of the Middle East. By forging stronger trade relationships between the United States and the Muslim Middle East, these two culturally rich regions will learn to tolerate each other’s differences while recognizing and embracing each other’s similarities.