During an IPR awareness workshop by Dubai Customs
Dubai Customs has enhanced its Intellectual Property Rights awareness programs through a new series of awareness workshops to be held in 2014. The new program features four specialized workshops distributed over the course of the year. Brand owner representatives are meeting with IPR specialists from local and GCC Customs administrations’ inspection and operations departments, to be updated on the latest trademark counterfeiting techniques.
Launching its awareness program for the current year, Dubai Customs’ IPR Department held the first workshop for this year on January 20, with participants from DC inspection heads and shift supervisors. The second workshop will be organized from 21 to 23 next April, which coincides with the World Intellectual Property Day celebrations. This session will be targeting customs staff from UAE and GCC as well as from local government departments and DC Inspection and Operations Departments, and will address trademarks of various products including pharmaceuticals, cosmetics and skin care products, auto spare parts and electronics.
Designed specifically for DC’s female staff and unified team, the third workshop will be held on August 20. It will touch on the issue of combating counterfeiting in cosmetics and skin care products. The fourth round of these workshops is scheduled on November 26 and will bring together UAE and GCC customs authorities’ staff. The workshop will tackle the issues of anti-commercial fraud and anti-counterfeiting in a vast range of products such as spare parts, electronics, and pharmaceuticals.
“The aim of these IPR workshops is to provide professionals at local and GCC customs authorities and administrations with essential knowledge about the nature of counterfeiting activities that target prominent brands,” says Dubai Customs’ IPR Department Manager, Mr. Yousuf Aziz. “This will promote customs staff ability to efficiently monitor, detect, and thwart such activities in order to protect consumers’ public health and safeguard them against counterfeit and non-conforming products, while at the same time protect the rights of manufacturers and producers against commercial piracy, and ultimately ensure a favorable environment for trade and investment in Dubai and the UAE at large.”
Mr. Aziz further noted, “So far, we have organized 22 IPR awareness workshops. Participants were introduced to the best counterfeiting detection techniques by specialized experts in trademarks, which are the hotspot for counterfeiting bids.” He continued, “Our efforts have paid off, as seizing operations for IPR infringing products have witnessed major improvement, with the number of seizures of various counterfeit items under this category reaching 203 during 2013.”
Dubai Customs’ IPR senior officer said, “We are very keen to involve trademark owners in these workshops, being key partners in any focused anti-counterfeiting or anti-commercial fraud efforts. This would insure that participating employees gain the necessary knowledge to accurately identify genuine products and detect copied items, no matter how well they imitate the original. In fact, we have noticed the benefit earned by staff and inspectors through these workshops, which did actually boost their capabilities to halt smuggling attempts of IPR infringing products in the most efficient manner.”