In order to clean Dubai from counterfeit products and ensure consumers buy original goods, the Department of Economic Development (DED) in Dubai has announced the launch of the ‘Intellectual Property Protection Advisory Board’ to bring businesses and the government closer to combat counterfeiting and trademark violations.
The first-of-its-kind public-private partnership across the world to protect intellectual property (IP), the Board is aimed to strengthen Dubai’s reputation as a competitive business destination and enhance the UAE’s position across global competitiveness rankings.
“Intellectual property protection is integral to a healthy and competitive business environment. Dubai has taken great strides in recent years in creating local and global partnerships to identify and eliminate counterfeit goods.
The Intellectual Property Protection Board is a critical addition that will help consolidate our efforts in IP protection,” said Mohammed Rashed Ali Lootah, Executive Director of the Commercial Compliance & Consumer Protection (CCCP) sector in DED.
Recently, the Criminal Investigation Department of Dubai Police have seized counterfeit goods worth Dh400,000 of ten global brands just before the goods were to be exported and also distributed in the local market.
Nearly 40,000 products of global brands were confiscated in the raid.
In another recent development, DED signed a memorandum of understanding with the leading international fashion house Louis Vuitton Malletier to co-operate on protecting intellectual property rights (IPR) and combatting counterfeiting both online and physical markets.
An official from DED will be the head of the Board, which will have members from each of the different industry sectors such as automobiles, electronics, fashion and fragrances. The Board will meet every quarter and listen to the feedback and recommendations from the industry representatives on negative practices if any and devise strategies to combat them.
“The Board will be a valuable support in creating awareness in the market on the latest trends and techniques adopted by trademark violators. It will in effect be the voice of trademark owners in Dubai to raise their concerns before the appropriate authorities. At the same time the Board will promote sharing of knowledge and best practices in IP protection,” said Lootah.
Lootah added that the Board will focus on investing in human resources by way of education and training to protect trademarks. Members of the board will also participate in events and roundtables worldwide to share updates on fake products and ways to stop them from corrupting the market.
“The Board will improve the ongoing co-ordination between CCCP and businesses in Dubai, leading to a faster and appropriate response to counterfeiting. The impact will be reflected as improved confidence among traders and consumers and higher ratings in competitiveness rankings for Dubai and the UAE in general,” said Lootah.
Knowledge exchange with leading businesses and cross-border co-operation with trademark owners is a major focus for DED in its efforts to curb counterfeiting. Lootah said DED has an open door approach in receiving feedbacks from the private sector and designing the appropriate response mechanisms.