UAE: Ministry of Economy Marks 24% Hike in Granting Intellectual Property Rights during First Quarter of 2022

29-Apr-2022


ABU DHABI - The Ministry of Economy has recorded an increase of 24 percent in Intellectual Property Rights (IPRs) granted to institutions and individuals in the UAE during the first quarter of 2022, compared to last year. This growth reflects an evident increase in interest in registering and protecting intellectual property in the UAE, following a strong legislative system of intellectual property, copyrights, and neighboring rights. The Ministry further noted that 60 percent of the applications were made by individuals, 23 percent by government institutions, 12 percent by private companies, and 5 percent by law firms.

H.E Abdulla Al Saleh, Under-Secretary of the Ministry of Economy, said: “These results reflect a positive impact of the issuance of the Federal Law No. 38 of 2021 on Copyrights and Neighboring Rights in December 2021. This law is part of the monumental legislative changes attempted by the UAE in preparation for the upcoming 50 years to promote the economic environment, investment, and trade infrastructure, and keep up with the country’s ambitions and vision. This new law constituted a major shift in developing the system of intellectual property rights in the area, abiding by the best international practices. This is fostering the leading status of the UAE in developing knowledge and innovative economy, while also strengthening its position in innovation and copyrights indexes.”

His Excellency further emphasized that the Federal Law on Copyrights and Neighboring Rights encourages investment in innovative industries and intellectual, artistic, and innovative properties. “It also provides protection of the author’s intellectual properties in various fields, such as the Collective Management of Copyrights in production and music, as well as guaranteeing a national environment with no copyright and intellectual infringement. Not to mention it reflects the country’s efforts and determination to maintain its intellectual and innovative properties, hence making the UAE a leading destination for innovators and talents from all over the world. The law is also set to protect intellectual properties in sectors of the new economy and the digital world, such as programming and smart apps, and other innovative sectors in literature, science, and various arts,” he added. 

Al Saleh asserted that the Ministry will continue its awareness campaigns to introduce the services of intellectual works, copyrights, and neighboring rights that it provides to various interested groups in the country. During the first quarter of 2022, the Ministry conducted 13 workshops - constituting of many federal and local government entities, academic institutions, and individuals - to introduce them to its services in the field of copyright and neighboring rights, and the new effective mechanisms provided by the new law in providing protection for author and intellectual and creative works in various sectors, a press release by the Ministry.

He explained that the concept of intellectual work according to the new law is “every innovative composition in the field of literature, arts or sciences of any kind, method of expression, importance, or purpose”. He pointed out that the most prominent examples of which are the written works such as books, brochures, articles, computer programs, smart applications, programming scripts, databases, lectures, works of acting and musical composition, works of architecture, engineering drawings, calligraphy, sculpture, engraving, and other creative products in the fields of fine arts, photography, maps, diagrams, and related three-dimensional works.

His Excellency said that the beneficiary audience includes broad categories, led by owners of creative production in various literary, artistic, cultural, and scientific fields - including writers, authors, musicians, programmers, investors, entrepreneurs, project owners, and companies working in various creative, cultural, entertainment and creative economy activities, and providers of legal services associated with creative authorship.

Al Saleh pointed out that the law has established special provisions to ensure that people of determination have access to sources of creativity, can participate in cultural and creative life, and can benefit from the outcomes of scientific progress, through exceptions to copyright rules, granted by the Ministry of Economy to government entities and non-profit institutions providing services to this social group. The exceptions permit the reproduction and distribution of published works in accessible ways to people of determination and enable them to access information, in conformity with the UAE’s accession to the Marrakech Institutes, in accordance with regulations to ensure that such means are directed at the people of determination and that this exception is not used to circumvent and infringe the rights of the author and publisher,” he added.

His Excellency called on the creators and innovators from within and outside the country to register their creative products with the Ministry of Economy and make use of its services available on its website at https://services.economy.ae/m/Pages/CategoryServices.aspx?CategoryID =10. The website includes five services for the registration and protection of individuals' and institutions’ copyrights.

He asserted that the Ministry's desire to provide all means to promote and protect intellectual products of the public and to provide the appropriate legal environment to ensure their continuous development and enhancement. Protection encompassed a wide range of rights guaranteed by law including intangible rights such as the right to publish the work for the first time, the right to attribute the work to himself, the right to object to any adjustment that may distort the work, and the right to withdraw it from circulation if there are serious reasons justifying this withdrawal, as well as financial rights such as the right to copy, sell, and distribute, the right to a public performance of his work, translation, rental, etc,” Al Saleh added.

His Excellency noted that the period of protection granted by the law to individuals lasts for their lifetime and 50 years after their death, 20 years for broadcasters from the date of the first broadcast of the programs, while penalties for infringement of copyrights start from AED 20,000 and up to AED 5 million depending on the nature and type of infringement.





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