Do not sell counterfeit products, warns MOCI

The Ministry of Commerce and Industry has urged traders not to trade and sell counterfeit products in the markets of the Sultanate of Oman. Recently, some of the traders were found dealing in counterfied products, including perfumes, watches, shoes, bags and telephones. This is an illegal act and infringement of intellectual property rights.

Ali bin Hamad bin Saif al Mamari, head of Intellectual Property Rights Monitoring Department of the Ministry of Commerce and Industry, said, “Recently, the ministry received a number of complaints about the counterfeiting of trademarks protected inside the Sultanate. This is done with the pretext given by some traders that they did not know about the rights of the trademark owners. In respense to such complaints, the ministry carried out inspections and seized a number of counterfeit products.

He said that according to article 16/2 of the Unified Trademarks Law of the GCC countries issued under Royal Decree No. 33/2017, the owner of a trademark can prevent others from using his or her trademarks without their prior consent. It also calls for payment of compensation for the loss caused due to violation of this right.

Al Mamari said that article 42 of the law details penalties and punishments for those who infringe the rights of the trademark owners. It says that those who violate the rights of the trademarks owners deliberately would be punished by imprisonment for a period of not less than one months and not more than three years and a fine not less than RO 500 and not more than RO 10,000, or one of those two punishments.

He said: “Due to the protection of the rights of the trademark owners, all traders and importers must stop trading and selling products which have trademarks protected in the Sultanate. This is violation of the provisions of the Unified Trademarks Law of the GCC countries. Those who would be found violating these rights would be held by the law and legal actions would be taken against them.

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