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Is criminalisation necessary for the enforcement of intellectual property rights in Jordan and the UAE? Criminal v commercial measures


Enforcement measures for intellectual property rights (IPR) are essential to the harmonisation of the international system and can be achieved by unifying national legal frameworks and minimum standards of protection. The Member States party to international intellectual property (IP) agreements and conventions must abide by the World Trade Organisation’s Agreement on Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights, to achieve more relatable national enforcement procedures. This article examines the national legislatures of Jordan and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) regarding civil/commercial litigation procedures, and their relation to a criminal law enforcement approach to IP enforcement. In particular, this work considers whether this approach achieves its goal of protecting IPRs and providing legal and economic stability within the IP system. Thus, the application of criminal enforcement measures by courts was examined to understand both the need for criminalisation and whether there may be a negative impact on IPR infringement deterrence, should the courts fail to implement criminal measures. The examination shows that imprisonment as a means of criminal enforcement for IPR infringements is not the preferred method of deterrence in the legal systems of the UAE and Jordan, as the courts impose fines instead. In addition, civil/ commercial litigation is more effective in the legal systems under scrutiny due to non-effective criminal procedures and a lack of social awareness concerning the value of criminal enforcement of IPR infringements.

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Correspondence to Ali Abdel Mahdi Massadeh.

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Massadeh, A.A.M., Alnusair, F.M., Massadeh, F.AM. et al. Is criminalisation necessary for the enforcement of intellectual property rights in Jordan and the UAE? Criminal v commercial measures. Crime Law Soc Change 79, 353–368 (2023).

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