In a major boost to its already significant footprint in global MICE industry, Dubai has won the bid to host the International Trademark Association (INTA) Annual Meeting in 2026. The city was selected as the host of the premier global gathering of professionals and experts in the field of trademarks and intellectual property during the opening ceremony of the 2023 INTA Annual Meeting held in Singapore on May 17. Dubai will be the first city in the Middle East to host the prestigious event.
Held annually, the event brings together over 8,000 experts in the field of intellectual property, including lawyers, trademark owners, government officials and academics to discuss vital issues related to intellectual property rights, with a particular focus on trademarks and copyrights.
According to a press statement, the successful bid for the INTA Annual Meeting 2026 was the result of a remarkable collaboration between the Emirates Intellectual Property Association (EIPA) and the UAE Ministry of Economy, Dubai’s Department of Economy and Tourism, the Dubai Chambers and Dubai Police. Dubai’s selection as the venue for the largest global gathering of intellectual property professionals reflects its emergence as a leading destination for international events, it adds.
“EIPA is delighted to confirm that Dubai has been chosen to host the International Trademark Association’s Annual Meeting in 2026. Dubai serves as an ideal location to host the prestigious event that will see various experts converging to share their insights, experiences and expertise in diverse aspects of trademark law and practice,” says Major General Abdul Quddus Al Obaidly, Chairman of EIPA.
“The UAE’s successful bid to host the event is a direct outcome of the combined endeavours and fruitful collaboration between various local and federal entities. It also serves as a powerful testament to the country and its leadership’s profound commitment to recognising the crucial role of intellectual property. We aim to ensure that the 2026 INTA Annual Meeting surpasses all expectations and becomes the best ever annual meeting in the organisation’s history,” he adds.
“The UAE’s selection as the host for the International Trademark Association’s Annual Meeting in 2026 speaks volumes about the country’s prominent global standing in the realm of intellectual property, particularly trademarks. It also exemplifies the UAE’s steadfast commitment to fostering a thriving business and investment environment, underpinned by a robust system for safeguarding intellectual property rights. Moreover, this choice underscores the UAE’s resolute emphasis on international cooperation and enhancing strategic partnerships in the fields of economy, trade and innovation,” says Abdullah Al Saleh, Under-Secretary of the UAE Ministry of Economy.
‘‘We are proud to contribute to successfully attracting major global events such as the INTA Annual Meeting to Dubai. With an ecosystem designed to encourage innovation, Dubai is home to a thriving community of start-up incubators and accelerators, as well as regulatory sandbox schemes for the development and testing of new tech business models. Trademarks and intellectual property are key considerations for any business, and we look forward to supporting this important event that will help empower both local and global business communities. We remain committed to accelerating the growth of businesses in the emirate and cementing Dubai’s position as a global business and trade hub,” says Mohammad Ali Rashed Lootah, President and CEO of Dubai Chambers.
The decision to host this event aligns with the UAE Leadership’s 2071 Centennial Plan, which outlines four pivotal pillars of priority for the government, including the establishment of a diversified knowledge economy. This pillar encompasses several aspects, including investment in scientific research and emerging sectors, a focus on innovation and entrepreneurship and advanced industries. Furthermore, it focuses on enhancing the protection of intellectual property, fostering innovation by instilling confidence in innovators to invest in research and development (R&D), and providing incentives for commercialisation.
“Attracting and hosting events that tie in with key sectors and areas of focus for Dubai is a critical part of our strategy, and the INTA Annual Meeting 2026 will provide an opportunity to both build on the momentum the emirate has gathered in this field and also provide an ideal platform for trademark experts and professionals to share knowledge and network. We look forward to working with the Emirates Intellectual Property Association and the International Trademark Association and other partners and stakeholders to ensure the event is a success and leaves a lasting legacy not just for Dubai and the UAE, but also the wider region,” says Ahmed Al Khaja, CEO of Dubai Festivals and Retail Establishment.
Founded in 1878, the International Trademark Association is a non-profit global organisation dedicated to promoting and protecting intellectual property and trademarks worldwide. The Association encompasses over 6,000 companies and represents more than 33,500 individuals across 181 countries, making it one of the most important organisations in the field of intellectual property.