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The scope of the UAE's trademark and IP rights regulations has been expanded. There will also be higher penalties for offenders. Image Credit: Shutterstock

Dubai: The UAE has raised fines for trademark infringements to Dh1 million as part of an expanded regulations on intellectual property (IP) rights. The higher penalties come into play as the UAE wants to put a complete stop on all such violations.

Protection on IP now extends to investors and owners of foreign companies, owners of projects and companies in the UAE, authorized registration agents, lawyers and legal service providers - and everyone concerned with the protection, registration or the prevention of infringement of a trademark. It will also help designers and talented investors, concerned local and federal government agencies, and public interest organizations.

The regulation will also extend to ‘new categories’ of trademarks, whether that is related to smell, sound or holograms. These are as part of Federal Law No. 36 of 2021 concerning trademarks under the Cabinet Resolution No. 57 of 2022.

Local and international protection

* Those who wish to apply for international registration of their brands must register in the UAE first and then submit an international application.

* The law offers protection in the country only to brands registered in the UAE. As for those who wish to receive international protection for their brands, they must register by applying in accordance with the protocol relating to the Madrid Protocol, or by applying directly to the desired country if it is not a member of this agreement.

“The Federal Law no. 36 of 2021 concerning trademarks is a new legislative step towards enhancing IP protection in the UAE," said Abdulaziz Alnuaimi, Assistant Undersecretary in the Commercial Affairs Regulation Sector at the Ministry of Economy.

"The law establishes major rules for trademark owners within a barrier-free environment that promotes creativity and innovation. It guarantees the growth and prosperity of their businesses, and meets the aspirations of the country to transition into a sustainable, leading global economy based on knowledge."

  1. What the new and expanded trademark regulation means for individuals and businesses in UAE:
  2. The law aims to combat all forms of commercial fraud, improve the quality of products traded in the UAE market, and enhance the attractiveness of the economy with leading global companies and brands;
  3. The regulation also aims to support and develop Emirati brands and ensure their competitiveness globally;
  4. It allows greater flexibility to accommodate unconventional trademark patterns and provides them with legal protection, in light of the new technologies used in building corporate trademarks.