Qatar was one of the first countries in the Middle East region which shed light on innovation, entrepreneurship and setting up research parks. While it is a very small country geographically it was indeed a pioneer when it set up Qatar foundation to spearhead innovation efforts in Qatar and the rest of the MENA. Dare I say Qatar Foundation was inspired by Silicon Valley to lead the way in developing this Middle East ecosystem for technology and innovation through its education, research, and access to expertise and community development initiatives.
Innovation in Qatar has been clearly defined in Qatar’s National Vision 2030 and in the Qatar’s National Development Strategies which state building a sustainable, and diversified economy through the expansion of R&D-based innovation.
At the core of successful innovation especially R&D based innovation is the ability to leverage intellectual property, and utilize an efficient and transparent landscape to protect, enforce and maintain IP rights. This is the case regardless of the type of IP, whether it is a patent, trademark, copyright, trade secret, database, or otherwise.
With this backdrop, Qatar has been striving to update its intellectual property procedures, laws, regulations and systems to strengthen and build confidence in its local IP landscape. These efforts included:
1- Town halls with different stakeholders in Intellectual property
2- RFPs and suggestions for updates relating to all types of IP
3- Brainstorming meetings with key decision markers to discuss suggestions; and finally
4- Actual updates to local trademark procedures and regulations.
Recently in 2022, there were 3 key changes to local procedures in Qatar namely;
1- Changes to who can own a trademark in Qatar
2- Changes to the treatment of tradenames in cases
3- Changes to procedures relating to change of name and address
We will be discussing these changes, their impact, when they are effective from and the reasoning behind these changes. Read more