Abu Dhabi – MENA Herald: A high level delegation from the UAE is currently participating in the 56th series of Meetings of the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO), which opened last October 3 and will run until October 11, 2016 at the WIPO headquarters in Geneva, Switzerland. The sessions to be covered include the General Assembly meeting of WIPO, the Coordinating Committee meeting and several key meetings of associations and unions of WIPO’s 189 member states.
The UAE delegation is led by His Excellency Engineer Mohammed Ahmed Bin Abdul Aziz Al Shehhi, Undersecretary for Economic Affairs, Ministry of Economy and accompanied by H.E. Dr. Ali Ibrahim Al Hosani, Assistant Undersecretary for Intellectual Property and Ahmed Khalfan Al Suwaidi, Director of Industrial Property.
During WIPO’s inaugural meeting and general assembly, H.E. Al Shehhi delivered a speech that highlighted the UAE’s great strides in developing an intellectual property system that has played a key role in the move to build a sustainable competitive economy based on knowledge and innovation and in compliance with the set objectives and goals of UAE Vision 2021.
H.E. Al Shehhi showcased the efforts being made by the concerned authorities, particularly the Ministry of Economy, for the development of the country’s intellectual property system– starting with the continuing work of the founding of the International Centre for Patents Registration (ICPR) in the UAE according to the highest standards and automation of the industrial property system, including patents, industrial designs and models, and utility certificates.
The MOE Undersecretary also showcased the result of these efforts, which are reflected in several reports and global indicators related—the most recent showing the UAE as first among Arab countries and 41st worldwide in the Global Innovation Index 2016; the first among Arab countries and 16th worldwide in the Global Competitiveness Index 2016 – 2017. He noted that the achievements made in the area of intellectual property played a significant role in receiving these global rankings.
On the sidelines of the event, H.E. Al Shehhi was able to meet with Dr. Francis Gurry, Director General, WIPO, in the presence of Ambassador H.E. Obaid Salem Al Zaabi, Permanent Representative of the UAE to the United Nations and other International Organizations in Geneva. During the meeting, the two officials discussed ways on how to further enhance cooperation for the development of the UAE’s intellectual property sector.
Al Shehhi pointed out that the Ministry has recently developed and implemented a five-year strategic plan to make the ICPR an international authority for patent examination; taking note of the rate of growth in patent applications in the Ministry of Economy in 2015 grew to 19 percent, reflecting over 1,753 patent applications.
For his part, Dr. Francis Gurry welcomed the move to enhance cooperation with the UAE, especially in the efforts to develop its system of intellectual property and to provide support for training and technical assistance. He also expressed confidence in the joint work to train and develop Emirati talent across various areas of intellectual property, adding that the promotion of a stronger intellectual property culture and the consolidation of working out and protecting global intellectual property rights reflects the strategic objectives set by the WIPO.