The United Arab Emirates has signed the document of accession to the Madrid Protocol which will enter into force on December 28, 2021. With the accession of the UAE, there are 125 countries belonging to the Madrid System and 3 of them are members of the Gulf Cooperation Council (the other members being Oman and Bahrain).


This Persian Gulf country is one of the richest countries in the world and one of the top 5 in terms of highest per capita income. The wealth is mainly concentrated in the two largest emirates, Dubai (the most cosmopolitan) and Abu Dhabi (the most conservative and the country’s capital), and it is based mainly on the exploitation of oil and natural gas, although in recent times tourism, finance, real estate and construction have also become very important. It plays a key and strategic role in the Middle East and global diplomacy, and it is one of the main gateways to Asia.

Its stability and wealth make it attractive for foreign investment and international trade, particularly for the luxury market.

One of the obstacles posed by the national route for the protection of trademarks in the UAE is the high cost of local legal services and official fees, which are extremely high in some cases. The price of the fee for international applications in the United Arab Emirates is still unknown and it is almost certain that the country has opted to levy an individual fee, but the country’s accession to the international registration system will surely entail an economic benefit for trademarks owners with regard to the protection of their rights.

Author: Cristina Arroyo

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