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The Global Congress Steering Group today issued The Dubai Declaration, identifying 25 recommendations as follow-up to the Fourth Global Congress on Combating Counterfeiting and Piracy that was held in Dubai from 3-5 February 2008.

The Global Congress Steering Group today issued The Dubai Declaration, identifying 25 recommendations as follow-up to the Fourth Global Congress on Combating Counterfeiting and Piracy that was held in Dubai from 3-5 February 2008.

The recommendations for action in the fight against counterfeiting and piracy reflect the comments and views of the senior government officials, business leaders and senior law enforcement authorities who attended the Congress. The complete Declaration, and other background information on the Congress, can be found on the Congress website.

This international event in Dubai brought together over 1,200 delegates from 90 countries and was held under the patronage of Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Ruler of Dubai. The event was hosted by Dubai Customs and the World Customs Organization (WCO).

The Fourth Global Congress provided a forum for participants to discuss and identify effective actions and solutions to address the growing problem of product counterfeiting and piracy. Along with the WCO, the Congress was convened by the International Criminal Police Organization (INTERPOL) and the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) in partnership with the world’s business community, represented by the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) through its Business Action to Stop Counterfeiting and Piracy (BASCAP) initiative, the International Trademark Association (INTA) and the International Security Management Association (ISMA). It was the first Congress held away from the European headquarters of WCO, INTERPOL and WIPO.

More than 50 speakers from 25 countries delivered proposals to more effectively combat counterfeiting and piracy around the general themes of:

  1. Enhancing cooperation and coordination; 
  2. Improving legislation and enforcement; 
  3. Increasing public and political awareness of counterfeiting and piracy activities and their associated economic and social harm; 
  4. Building capacity (skills and competencies) to protect intellectual property; 
  5. Stopping the growing threat to human health and safety from fake medicines and a wide range of consumer goods; 
  6. Stopping the flow of counterfeit and pirated goods in free trade zones and transhipment countries; and, 
  7. Stopping the fast growing problem of the sale of counterfeit and pirated products over the Internet.  

WCO Secretary General Michel Danet expressed his delight with the outcomes of the Fourth Global Congress which he said reflected his driving theme: It’s time to act, and the time is now.

“The concrete recommendations contained in the Dubai Declaration are a visible demonstration of the international community’s united efforts to fight counterfeiting and piracy across the globe,” Mr Danet said. “Over the coming months, the WCO and its stakeholders will be putting words into action by joining forces to vigorously target these trade gangsters whose illicit activities have untold health and safety consequences, and cause enormous social and economic damage”. Mr Danet also thanked the Congress steering group partners and Dubai Customs for their sterling co-operation during the Fourth Global Congress.

“The Global Congresses continue to bring much needed visibility to the growing global problem of counterfeiting and piracy, and these follow-up recommendations are essential in ensuring concrete actions are taken,” said Ronald Noble, Secretary General of INTERPOL and the 2008/09 Chair of the Global Congress Steering Group. “The recommendations from the Fourth Global Congress have laid down inspiring challenges as we plan for the Fifth Global Congress.

“I want to commend the Director General of Dubai Customs, Ahmed Butti Ahmed and Michel Danet, Secretary General of the WCO, the hosts and co-organizers of the Fourth Global Congress, for the fine work they did in ensuring the Congress continued to shed light on this global epidemic,” added Mr Noble. Kamil Idris, Director General of the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) said: “The Fourth Global Congress in Dubai builds on the achievements of previous meetings and demonstrates the strength of this remarkable private-public sector partnership in tackling counterfeiting and piracy. The concrete recommendations that emerged from the discussions offer a practical and coherent framework within which to focus efforts and consider initiatives to curb this pernicious practice. We look forward to advancing this process, together with our partners, in the context of the Fifth Global Congress in 2009,” he added.

INTERPOL is planning to host a regional and global congress under its chair of the steering group in 2008/09. Dates and locations will be announced in the near future.

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