DUBAI – The Government of the United Arab Emirates (UAE) has issued Federal Law No. (11) of 2021 replacing the previous Industrial Property Law No. (31) of 2006 on Regulation and Protection of Industrial Property of Patents, Industrial Drawings and Designs.
The new law applies to patents, utility models, industrial designs and trade secrets in the UAE, and aims to protect industrial property and regulate the procedures of registration, use, exploitation, and assignment, to ensure support for knowledge and innovation in the UAE.
The new law was published in the official gazette number (703 – Annex) on May 31, 2021, and will enter into force six months after the date of publication.
The major amendments to the current UAE law are as follows:
- The utility certificate can be converted into a patent application by complying with the conditions set out by law’s executive regulations.
- Disclosure of information by the inventor or by a third party who obtained the information directly or indirectly from the inventor shall not affect the obtaining of a patent if this occurred within (12) months before the date of filing the application.
- The combination of two or more medicines for the medical treatment by a licensed pharmacist is now allowed (patents rights are not applied).
- Methods of treatment and diagnosis remain non-patentable, however, the patentability of products used in such methods is not specified in the law. It may be assumed that product claims are allowed, then by default, purpose-limited product claims such as Compound X for use in the treatment of Disease Y, may be considered patentable. Guidance on this topic may be provided by the implementing regulations.
- Accelerated examination may be requested by the applicants, and a number of such cases will be accepted each year. Specifics on this practice and whether the UAE will join the PPH agreements are not yet certain.
- With regards to the industrial design, it is considered new only when it has not been disclosed to the public, prior to the filing date of the application, whether by publication, use, or any other method. The new law increased the period of protection for the industrial design to (20) years starting from the date of submission of the application.
- Integrated Circuit Layout Designs can be filed in the UAE and the term of protection is (10) years.
The executive regulations of this law will be issued by the Council of Ministers within a period of six months from the date of publication of this law. The regulations and decisions issued in implementation of the provisions of Federal Law No. (31) of 2006 shall continue until the necessary decisions are issued to implement the provisions of the new law, but in a manner that does not conflict with the provisions of the new law.
For further details, please contact AGIP UAE office at: email@example.com