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The UAE’s Commissioner of Intellectual Property’s Powers Clarified Following DIFC Announcement

New Intellectual Property Regulations (IP Regulations) will be put into effect from the 5th of July 2021, following the latest announcement from the Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC), the international financial hub in the Middle East, Africa and South Asia (MEASA) region.

The introduction of the regulations reflects the Centre’s continuing commitment to maintaining a transparent and robust legal and regulatory framework aligned with global best practice. It also supports DIFC’s focus on fostering innovation by identifying and protecting intellectual property rights, which is of key importance to technology and start-up companies.

IP Regulations have been approved by the DIFC Authority Board of Directors and issued under the Intellectual Property Law, DIFC Law No. 4 of 2019 (IP Law), facilitating the administration and enforcement of the DIFC IP Law. DIFC’s IP Law and Regulations enhance and augment the UAE’s existing intellectual property laws by working with the federal regime and DIFC legal framework, common law principles and the certainty provided by binding legal precedent created by the DIFC Courts.

Regulations provide further clarity on the powers and functions of the Commissioner of Intellectual Property (the Commissioner). They also outline the process and requirements for filing intellectual property infringement complaints, inspections and investigations in connection with violations of the IP Law. Additionally, the IP Regulations cover issuing of directions by the Commissioner, along with the particulars that must be contained in such directions.

The regulations establish a Register of Experts that the Commissioner may appoint to assist in the investigation of a complaint. They also enable the Commissioner to cooperate with relevant federal and local authorities in the UAE for the seamless protection of intellectual property rights across each of their respective jurisdictions.


  • Francis is a journalist and our lead LatAm correspondent, with a BA in Classical Civilization, he has a specialist interest in North and South America.

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