Thursday, August 31, 2017

Draft Myanmar trademarks law

Image result for myanmar

The draft trademark law (“Draft Law”) was published in Myanmar newspapers earlier this month for public comments. Overall, the Draft Law complies with the TRIPS Agreement, which is good news.

Highlights of the Draft Law are:

•The new rule is that ownership of a mark would go to the first-to-file and no longer to the first-to-use;
•The Myanmar Intellectual Property Office ("MIPO") will be established under the Ministry of Education;
•Registrable marks would include trade mark, service mark, collective and certification marks;
•The Draft Law would also protect geographical indications;
•MIPO would conduct formality and substantive examination of marks;
•Opposition and cancellation actions would be available;
•Well-known marks would be protected against misuses ;
•Priority and exhibition rights would be available;
•There is no procedure for automatically re-registering marks which are recorded under the current system. Therefore, all marks currently recorded would need to be re-filed and examined once the new law enters into force in order to gain protection in Myanmar;
•There is no provision addressing any potential conflicts between marks which are recorded under the current system and/or used in Myanmar and marks which would be registered once the new law is enacted, which is likely to cause legal uncertainty;
•Remedies for enforcement would be administrative (customs) criminal and civil. 

The Draft Law is now being reviewed by the Draft Law Committee of the Parliament. The Trade Mark Law could be enacted before the end of this year.

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