The Time for Myanmar Trademark Registration Is Now
Myanmar’s new trademark law is likely delayed until 2016 but the time for trademark registration is now.
As we informed our clients in May 2014, Myanmar is poised to shift its trademark protections from a first-to-use system based on colonial British statutes and case law to a brand-new first-to-file system drafted in cooperation with the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO). The change was initially expected to occur by the end of 2014 but now it appears likely that Myanmar will not transition to the new system until 2016 at the earliest.
Why the Time for Myanmar Trademark Registration Is Now
When the new Trademark Law comes into effect it will create new government institutions, such as the Myanmar Intellectual Property Office (“MIPO”) and the Trademark Registry. And while the text of the law is complete, there is still a great deal of uncertainty about how these institutions will function in the real world. Fortunately, however, the existing trademark system, (while somewhat antiquated) is well understood and offers real protections for trademark holders. What is more, trademark holders who have registered their marks under the old system will receive the added benefit of continuing protection for those marks under the new system during a three-year grace period.
While we advise our clients to re-register their trademarks under the new Trademark Law as soon as the new law goes into effect, those who have already registered their marks under the old regime will receive priority under the new system. Priority status for existing registrants should prove to be a high-ground from which to manage legal risks including the circumvention of potential disputes with conflicting applicants under the new first-to-file system. The three-year grace period commences from the date the new Trademark Law comes into effect.
Contact us now for expedited processing
To register your trademark now or for further information on trademarks, intellectual property or general business in Myanmar please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org