02 Apr 2023
UAE discusses impact of modern technology on intellectual property rights at WIPO Conversation
H.E. Al Saleh addresses the session on behalf of the UAE
H.E. Abdulla Al Saleh, Undersecretary at the Ministry of Economy, represented the UAE at the seventh edition of the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) Conversation, which discussed the impact of metaverse on intellectual property (IP) management. The event took place on 29 and 30 March at the WIPO headquarters in Geneva, Switzerland.
During the session, the UAE emphasized the importance of developing IP systems and legislation in order to keep up with the pace of today’s remarkable technological advancements. The need to capitalize on the capabilities of technologies such as AI and the metaverse was highlighted, apart from their applications in safeguarding IP rights and creating more flexible and efficient policies to enhance the creativity and innovation environment.
H.E. Al Saleh said: “The metaverse holds many promising opportunities, including the possibility to launch a unified global digital economy comprising all global markets and diverse business models. This in turn could create new opportunities in various vital sectors such as real estate, virtual advertising, digital fashion, and other new economy fields.”
“The metaverse will contribute greatly to facilitating IP management through the digitization of services. Its applications can also be leveraged to create a unified global platform for IP registration and management. The availability of data in virtual worlds plays a key role in stimulating cross-border innovation and enhancing the traditional IP environment by facilitating global collaboration.”
The Undersecretary underlined the UAE’s success in developing an integrated IP ecosystem, which now serves as one of the cornerstones of the country’s economic and social development. Besides, it is a major driver of technology innovation, legally safeguarding the innovations and inventions of both individuals and companies through a set of well-defined laws. The most prominent among these are the law on copyright and the neighboring rights, the Industrial Property Law and the Trademark Law. All of these contribute to enhancing the competitiveness and diversity of the UAE’s creative economy and the country’s position in global innovation indicators.
Moreover, H.E. Al Saleh elaborated on the most prominent initiatives launched by the UAE to keep pace with emerging global economic trends, in line with the directives of the wise leadership and the objectives of the 50 and the UAE Centennial 2071 goals. These measures play a key role in building a more flexible and sustainable knowledge-based economic model. Also highlighted were the national strategies designed to enable the new economy sectors in the UAE. Examples include the UAE’s Fourth Industrial Revolution Strategy, the Emirates Blockchain Strategy 2021, and the National AI Program.
In addition, the Undersecretary reviewed the UAE's initiatives and future visions with regard to the development of the metaverse ecosystem, most prominent of which is the Dubai Metaverse Strategy that aims to strengthen Dubai's position as one of the top 10 cities in the field of metaverse. The strategy is set to double the number of blockchain and metaverse companies in the emirate, contributing to the creation of nearly 40,000 virtual jobs by 2030.
H.E. also highlighted the UAE's launch of the ‘Global Cooperation Village’ in the metaverse in cooperation with the World Economic Forum Davos and several other international organizations and governments. The Village aims to enhance global efforts in finding solutions to today’s global economic challenges.
He added that the UAE Ministry of Economy had launched its third headquarters in the metaverse, in addition to holding the first global press conference on the metaverse platform during the inaugural edition of the Investopia conference in 2022. Moreover, the second edition of the UAE’s Investopia conference, which was held in Abu Dhabi this year, discussed the current challenges and potential solutions for IP management in the metaverse.
H.E. Al Saleh also underlined the importance of international cooperation in formulating more flexible and effective IP regulations. It is of key significance since IP is one of the main drivers of innovation in decentralized virtual environments, he noted.
He pointed out that the UAE appreciates the efforts led by WIPO in developing an appropriate framework for IP rights, focusing on ensuring their protection in the metaverse as well.