News & insights

United Arab Emirates: Dubai Border Measures – Alive and Kicking

December 1, 2006

Border measures are always a key tool in the fight against counterfeiting and piracy and a critical element of a successful intellectual property enforcement system. So in the scope of its continuous efforts to create competent border enforcement measures and to provide effective protection in the country, the  Dubai Customs has recently established a trademark recordation system for marks registered at the UAE Trademark Office. This system will undoubtedly help Customs Officials target, intercept, and confiscate shipments of infringing goods.

Pursuant to this newly established recordation system, the owner of a trademark registration or his legal representative can now apply to the Dubai Customs requesting recordation. The application should include certain information as required by the applicable policies and must be accompanied by a copy of the certificate of registration of the mark and a copy of the power of attorney. The Dubai Customs will then issue a recordation notice. The recordation of a trademark remains in force for one year as from the date of recordation and is renewable for like periods.

One fundamental premise of the recordation system (other than providing a central registry containing information for recorded trademarks) is that it allows Customs officials to adopt an ex-officio border system. An ex-officio system is different from the standard border system in which a judicial authority orders Customs to detain the infringing shipment after identifying the infringing goods. The key advantage of the ex-officio system is that it allows for prompt and proactive action by Customs officials thus avoiding the delays inherently involved in seeking judicial action. Customs officials are always on the look out for infringing goods and are thus able to act quickly to confiscate counterfeit and pirated merchandise.

It is worth noting here that the UAE became a member of the World Trade Organization (WTO) on April 10, 1996. The WTO extends to agreements concerning not only the trade in goods and services but also to the trade-related aspects of intellectual property TRIPS. TRIPS, Part III, Section 4 describes the specific requirements for border measures in order to provide an enhanced and effective level of intellectual property protection.

Should you wish to take advantage of this recordation system or should you have any further enquiries regarding the subject matter, please contact us at recordation@sabaip.com