Dubai World Conference on consumer rights sets stage for international debate on consumer protection

Press release
Published March 31st, 2013 - 05:27 GMT

Held under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Maktoum Bin Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Deputy Ruler of Dubai, the first-ever Dubai World Conference on Consumer Rights (DWCCR) and Power Brands Dubai exhibition, will be launched at the Dubai World Trade Centre (DWTC) from 1 to 3 April, 2013. 

His Excellency Sami Al Qamzi, Director General of the Department of Economic Development (DED) in Dubai will deliver the inaugural address at the three-day conference and exhibition. Entry to the exhibition is free and visitors have the opportunity to see live demonstrations, attend product launches and the opportunity to win two cars and 100 valuable prizes by participating in daily raffle draws. 

Organised by the Department of Economic Development, Dubai, with the support of Dubai Refreshment Company (DRC), the conference and exhibition aim to bring the best international practices in protecting consumer rights and intellectual property to the fast-evolving Middle East retail sector and particularly the vibrant UAE market. 

“The Middle East sector has a high concentration of brands, outlets, sales activity and human talent. Dubai is a good example of a vibrant retail market contributing remarkably to the national value-add as well as creating jobs and stimulating growth across other sectors such as logistics and tourism,” Omar Bushahab, CEO of Commercial Compliance and Consumer Protection Sector said referring to the significance of DWCCR and Power Brands Dubai. 

“Creating awareness among traders as well as consumers on internationally accepted and ethical practices in retailing is the logical next step to making this promising sector competitive and sustainable. The Dubai World Consumer Rights Conference and Power Brands Dubai exhibition are part of our efforts in this direction,” added Bushahab. 

The ultimate objective of the event is to empower consumers and help retailers drive revenues through consumer loyalty. The conference will feature 27 speakers including international consumer rights advocates as well as experts in consumer protection and intellectual property rights (IPR), brand strategists, businesses, government officials and the academia. 

The first day of the conference will have four key note sessions. Following the opening address and a speech by Tarek El Sekka, General Manager, Dubai Refreshments LLC/Pepsi, the delegates will move into the first session on Controlling the prices of commodities: What should be the role of governments-spectator, whistle-blower or watchdog? How governments can effectively interfere in the price mechanism?” Ralph Nader, Consumer Advocate, Lawyer and former US Presidential candidate will lead the session. 

Terry Jones, Founder & former CEO of will lead the second session. Jones, who is also Chairman of and CIO of Sabre will share his thoughts on ‘The E-Commerce Revolution: How to protect the rights of consumers purchasing through the internet?’. 

The third session on ‘Reading the fine print: The changing world of IPR law; how governments and business houses can benefit from this?’ will have Marion Guth, Regional Councillor for IP Matters & Middle East INI Expert in the French embassy in the UAE, Dr Ghaith H Fariz, Director, Arab Knowledge Report, UNDP, and Jack Chang, Vice chairman of the China Association of Enterprises with Foreign Investment and Chairman of Quality Brands Protection Committee and Senior IP Counsel at General Electric will address this session moderated by Omer Obeidat, Partner & Head of Intellectual Property Department at Al Tamimi & Co. 

Tom Philips, Programme Manager Europe for the Education Office of Global Outreach who also serves as Small Business Ombudsman of US Consumer Product Safety Commission will speak on ‘OECD’s Global Recalls; a global partner on product recalls that will create a breakthrough in product safety information sharing’ in the fourth session of the day. 

The Power Brands exhibition will bring together major trademarks worldwide. Besides exchanging views on the latest concepts on brands and their promotion, the participants will demonstrate their winning practices in quality assurance and customer loyalty. 

Sessions over the next two days will also see guest speakers highlighting latest trends and practices in consumer protection and IPR. Each session will be followed by a Q&A session to allow participants to interact with the speakers.

Background Information

Department of Economic Development

The Department of Economic Development (DED) is the government body entrusted to set and drive the economic agenda of the emirate of Dubai, UAE. The DED supports the structural transformation of Dubai into a diversified, innovative service-based economy that aims to improve the business environment and accelerate productivity growth.

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Department of Economic Development
PO Box 13223
Dubai, United Arab Emirates
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