News & insights

IP Highlights : Protection of Trade Secrets

September 28, 2010

The table below sets forth basic information on trade secrets in the countries of our region. A trade secret refers to a practice, business design, formula that accrues profits for a company and is not considered general knowledge. A company can always claim protection for the trade secret in order to safeguard its confidential information.

Trade secret laws were introduced in the countries of our region over the past years either by their own codes or under the framework of other laws, such as Labor or Patent laws. It is important to note that many of the countries listed in the table that do not have trade secret laws are currently drafting them.

It is also worth noting that various countries in our region are members of the World Trade Organization (WTO). Article 39 of the TRIPS agreement defines laws related to the Protection of Undisclosed Information. Specifically, section (1) of Article 39 gives a legal business the right to prevent information considered as a trade secret from “being disclosed to, acquired by, or used by others without their consent.”

Generally, information could be considered a trade secret if:

a)       The information is not commonly known, easily accessible, or used by individuals that usually deal with such information.

b)       Its confidentiality has commercial value.

c)       It has been identified by the party in control of the information as a secret.

                                                          

Country

Is there a trade secrets law present in the country?

In case not, are trade secrets protected under other laws?

WTO Member

Algeria

No

No

Bahrain

Yes (Trade Secrets Law No. 7/2003)

 

Yes

Cyprus

No

Yes

Jordan

Yes (Unfair Competition and Trade Secrets Law no. 15/2000)

Yes

Kuwait

No

Yes

Lebanon

No

No

Morocco

No

Yes

Oman

No

Labor Law 35/2003 Article no. 27/4 and

Industrial Property Law no. 67/2008, Articles 60/1/b, 65/1 , 65/2

Yes

Qatar

Yes (Trade Secrets Law No. 5/2005)

Yes

Saudi Arabia

Yes (Ministerial Decree No. 50/2005)

Yes

Syria

No

Labor Law no. 17/2004, Articles 64, 95, 96, 248.

No

UAE

No

Patents Law no. 17/2002 Article 39-42;

 

Yes

Yemen

Yes

No

Should you have any questions, or require any additional information, please do not hesitate to contact us at info@sabaip.com