Yemen: The Ministry of Industry and Trade in Sana’a has published an announcement with regards to Aden’s Ministry proclamation
Following the proclamation of the Ministry of Industry and Trade under the rule of the legitimate government in Aden dated 20 February 2018, the ministry of Industry and Trade under the national salvation government has published an announcement in the local newspaper “Attawra” dated 23 May 2018 in response to Aden’s proclamation on identifying the competent authority for intellectual Property Protection and Trademarks Registration.The said notification reflects the following points:
1) General Department of Intellectual Property Protection- General Office of Industry and Trade ( S’anaa) explicitly states that the trademark registration services is part of its function at the business services sector and that it has not authorized The Office of Industry and Trade in Aden to receive or complete the procedures for trademarks.
2) The accuracy and requirements are merely available at the General Office of Industry and Trade ( S’anaa) and the office in Aden does not meet the same.
3) The proclamation is not based on relevant law or its implementing regulation and that any action fulfilled at Aden will not be considered legal and shall not confer protection.
Lastly the notice reiterates the illegality of the proclamation and invalidity of any registration sought at the trademark office in Aden. The complete copy of the gazette publication available in English and Arabic has been enclosed herewith for your kind perusal.
As a background, please be advised that the legitimate government in Aden used to be in charge of trademarks Office in Sana’a; however, when the national salvation government (by coup) took control over Sana’a region, the official government retreated to Aden region which resulted in the formation of Trademark Office (TMO) in Aden- Yemen which has started functioning independently from the current TMO in Sana’a.
In the meantime, our colleagues in Aden has got in touch with the local Registry and got the information that Aden Trademarks Office started receiving many trademarks applications and they are in the process of issuing the first trademarks Gazettes for opposition purpose. For the time being, there is no website where public can check the opposition gazette at the Aden office; however, the official Gazette will be available for collection at the Ministry of Industry and Trade which will contain publication of trademarks applications for opposition purpose as well as Commercial Agencies and other Ministerial regulations.
Please be advised that at this stage there is ambiguity as to the cycle of the Gazette issuance, related costs, subscription, registration etc ; however, since the proclamation clarified adopting of the same Yemeni Law No. 23 of 2010 on Trademarks and Geographical Indications, the opposition period will remain as 90 days from publication date. In this regard, please note that the situation at the office in Aden is still at its nascent stage and lacks many essential elements regarding setting up of a trademark office and the processing of applications including publication hence we will have to exercise patience and await further developments.
We believe that this rebuttal issued by the authorities in S’ana is a very serious and significant change that international brand owners need to be aware of since many other third parties will make use of this opportunity to register other trademarks rights in Aden in Bad Faith and there is no clear outcome to civil war that can be predicted at this stage.
Rest assured we are following the matter closely from our side and shall update you with any developments in due course and meanwhile, we shall also upload the first gazette to be issued by Aden Trademark Office on our website upon its availability.
UAE: Administrative Procedures Enabling Trademark Holders to Prove Counterfeit
For better fighting against counterfeit products, IPR directorate at Dubai Customs has undertaken following procedures to prove counterfeiting products at the time of filing a complaint:
Following a meeting with the Head of Intellectual Property Department with IP licensed agents in UAE on 02 May 2018 it has been stipulated that a recordal of change of name and address of a registrant of a trademark registration can be undertaken simultaneously at one official fee. This new practice rescinds previous practice whereby two separate recordals of change of name and address should be carried out at two official fee for each recordal. It is also noteworthy to indicate that a recordal of agent for service for subsequent registration actions is optional.
Iran; Adoption of Locarno Agreement
Iran has endorsed Locarno Agreement Establishing an International Classification for Industrial Designs which will come into effect as of 12 July 2018 becomingthe 55th contracting party to the Locarno Agreement, and the first to join since 2014.