November 06, 2017: The Emirates Intellectual Property Association (EIPA) in cooperation with the International Criminal Police Organization (Interpol), the world’s largest international police organisation, successfully kicked off the 7th Regional Intellectual Property, IP, Crime Conference in Middle East and North Africa (MENA), today (November 6, 2017), at the Armani Hotel in Dubai. The event, which will run until the 7th of November 2017, is being held under the patronage and the presence of Lieutenant-General Dahi Khalfan Tamim, Deputy Chairman of Police and Public Security in Dubai and Honorary President, EIPA. The conference will feature the participation of senior government officials, experts and decision makers and law enforcement professionals, gathering together to take part in discussions and activities aimed at exploring key ways on how to address the challenges brought about by IP crimes. The 7th Regional Intellectual Property, IP, Crime Conference in Middle East and North Africa is also being organized in collaboration with Dubai Police, Dubai Customs, Institute of Training and Judicial Studies, the Brand Owners’ Protection Group, BPG, and UL, a global independent safety science company--all joining together in support of the country's continuing efforts to protect IP rights and to promote a culture of IP in the region.
During his opening speech at the event, Major General Dr. Abdel Quduos Alobaidli, Assistant Commander-in-Chief for Quality and Excellence, Dubai Police and Chairman of EIPA, emphasized on the importance of international cooperation among all agencies and authorities involved in the battle against IP crimes in the UAE and the MENA region. He also threw the spotlight on the successful experiences of the UAE in addressing IP violations and crimes--falling in line with the directives of His Highness (H.H.) Sheikh Khalifa Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, UAE President and H.H. Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, to develop and implement strategic policies covering intellectual property rights, which is seen as an important factor in the moves to drive in more economic growth and promote innovation and creativity as part of UAE Vision 2021.
Alobaidli stated, “This conference is part of our commitment to support the country’s development process on innovation, which our wise leadership believes to be the secret of government survival and renewal and a key factor to achieve progress. Our cooperation with Interpol and other authorities in charge of IP rights in the UAE is a step forward to protect creativity and encourage innovation, which in turn can help build a new generation of scientists, thinkers and innovators who are qualified to create and explore a better future. We are looking forward to seeing positive results from this conference, which include supporting the efforts to create an environment that can host and encourage innovation and creativity and serve humanity. EIPA is keen to share the UAE’s leading experience in the field of intellectual property rights protection, and remains steadfast in its support for regional endeavors aimed at adopting clear-cut policies and approaches to combat IP Crimes in MENA region.”
Other opening speeches were given by Colonel Sheikh Muhammad Abdullah Al Mualla, Director General of Total Quality Control, Dubai Police and His Excellency (H.E.) Abdul Aziz Obaidullah, Head of the NCB Coordination for MENA, Interpol.
Obaidullah expressed gratitude to the UAE authorities, headed by the Ministry of the Interior, the Dubai Police General Headquarters and the Emirates Intellectual Property Association (EIPA), for their continuous efforts in supporting regional and international cooperation. 'Participants of the 7th Regional Intellectual Property, IP, Crime Conference in Middle East and North Africa (MENA) will now have an increased awareness of the consequences of counterfeiting and trading in illicit goods. The conference also highlights the importance of regional partnerships and its impact on these illegal activities, as well as the importance of exchanging information and strengthening cooperation among various law enforcement entities.'
“We are committed in keeping the region abreast of all the developments, updates and services provided by INTERPOL to our members, from databases and methods of investigation, workshops, conferences and other activities.' 'We are confident that we will be able to make our region and the world safer by working together through concerted efforts and sufficient resources for the benefit of all.', he added.
The first panel for the event, 'International cooperation to fight against counterfeiting,' was led by H.E. Sir Ronald Flanagan, Former HMIC and Chief Constable, Police Service of Northern Ireland and Royal Ulster Constabulary (RUC). He was joined by Françoise Dorcier, Coordinator of Interpol's Illicit Goods and Global Health Programme; Stephanie Leguay, Coordinator, National Anti-Counterfeiting Committee of INPI in France; and Yousef Ozair, Director of Intellectual Property Rights Department (IPR), Dubai Customs. The session ended with a speech given by Richard Yung, Member of the Senate of France, who stressed on the significance of reinforcing international cooperation, which is an initial step in ensuring the success of combating counterfeiting activities.
The second panel, 'Rule of law indicator from the perspective of intellectual property,' was led by a panel of international experts, which included Huda Barakat, Chair of the Middle East Advisory Council of the International Trademark Association; Dr. Mohammed Al Kamali, Director General, Institute of Training and Judicial Studies; Jassem Saif, Head of the Judicial Inspection Department, Minister of Justice; and Hassan Arab, Co-Head of Litigation, Partner, Deputy Managing Partner, Al Tamimi and Company Law Firm.
The third panel, entitled Counterfeiting- Danger for the Health and Safety of Consumers,' featured the participation of Françoise Dorcier, Coordinator of Interpol’s Illicit Goods and Global Health Programme; Anais Eiden, Group Senior Legal Manager Intellectual Property, Research and Development for Vallourec Group; Captain Omer Hassan, Head of Commercial Fraud and Piracy Department, Dubai Police; Dr. Mudather Abdulla, Legal Counsel at Sharjah Economic Department, and Erik Liegee, Head of Forensics, Group Security, Volkswagen Group.
The first day of the event concluded with the fourth panel discussion, 'New technology and the challenges of intellectual property protection.' which featured the participation of Erik Madsen, Senior Investigations Manager Europe, ME and Africa Underwriters Laboratories (UL), Denmark; Yuichi Mizue, Managing Director, Koyo ME; and Dr. Abdulla Qasim, Consultant Neurosurgeon at Rashid Hospital, Dubai Health Authority.
The second day of the 7th Regional Intellectual Property, IP, Crime Conference in Middle East and North Africa will be held on November 7, 2017. The day-long activity will include key workshops from EIPA that include 'New Challenges: Highlights from Enforcement in Action;’ ‘Effective Strategies: Combining Technologies and Enforcement;' Delivering Operational Success against IP Crime-an EIPA Study;' and 'Building Bridges Between Jurisdictions: International Cooperation Challenges and Solutions.'
Meanwhile, Interpol workshops will also be held throughout the second day as well. The sessions include 'International College of Intellectual Property Crime Investigators: Prospects for capacity building;' followed by a session on how to achieve positive field results in anti-counterfeiting and a concluding session entitled 'Current Challenges: How do criminals use the internet to promote fake goods.'