There are some common inquiries arises regarding the trademark registration in Egypt including,
- What's the trademark as per the Egyptian law?
- What are the prohibited trademarks as per the Egyptian Law?
- Who has the right to register a trademark in Egypt?
- Is that possible for a juristic person (a company) to register a trademark in Egypt or it must be a natural person?
- Is that possible for a foreigner to file the registration application or it must be an Egyptian?
- Is that possible to register a trademark without having a headquarter or a branch in Egypt or you must have one?
- Is that possible to register a collective trademark?
- What are the required documents to register a trademark in Egypt?
Herein, we will reply to those inquiries in detail,
Trademark owners are always seeking to protect and register their trademarks all over the world and Egypt at the top of the list since it is one of the biggest countries in the region.
The Egyptian legislator was interested in protecting trademarks against any infringement, therefore, it enacted a privileged law to protect trademarks under the law no. 82 of 2002 on the protection of intellectual property rights.
This law defined trademarks, as it stated in art. no. 63 that "The trademark is any sign distinguishing goods, whether products or services, and include in particular names represented in a distinctive manner, signatures, words, letters, numerals, designs, symbols, signposts, stamps, seals, drawings, engravings, a combination of distinctly formed colors and any other combination of these elements if used, or meant to be used, to distinguish the products of a particular industry, agricultural, forest or mining venture or any goods, or to indicate the origin of products or goods, or their quality, category, guarantee, preparation process, or to indicate the provision of any service. In all cases, a trademark shall be a sign that is recognizable by sight."
The law prohibited to register the following marks as trademarks or as components thereof:
(1) Marks devoid of any distinctive character, or composed of signs or statements which refer to the products, or which are the normal picture or image thereof.
(2) Any mark which is contrary to public order or morality.
(3) Public armorial bearings, flags and other emblems pertaining to the State or any other state, regional or international organizations, as well as any imitations thereof.
(4) Marks which are identical with, or similar to, symbols of a religious character.
(5) Symbols of the Red Cross or Red Crescent, or any other emblem of the same character, as well as any imitations thereof.
(6) The portrait of an individual or his armorial bearings, except with his consent.
(7) Designations of honorary degrees which the applicant is unable to prove his right thereto.
(8) Marks and geographical indications which are likely to mislead or confuse the public or which contain false descriptions as to the origin of products, whether goods or services, or their other qualities, as well as the signs that contain an indication of a fictitious, imitated or forged trade name.
Any individual or legal entity can register his trademark in Egypt, whether he is Egyptian or foreigner and whether his activity in a country or entity member in the World Trade Organization or that applies reciprocity with Egypt.
The abovementioned provisions confirmed by the article no. 66 of the law no. 82 on intellectual property which states "Without prejudice to the provisions of international conventions applied in Egypt, any natural person or legal entity, Egyptian or foreign, belonging to or having its headquarter in a country member in the World Trade Organization or which applies reciprocity to Egypt, shall have the right to register its trademark in the Department of Trade Registry in Egypt, with the ensuring rights in conformity with the provisions of this Law.
Nationals of all member states of the World Trade Organization shall benefit from any advantage, preference, privilege or immunity granted by any other law to nationals of any state, unless such advantage, preference or immunity derives from:
(A) Agreements on judicial assistance or agreements on law enforcement of general nature;
(B) Agreements in connection with the protection of intellectual property rights which came into force prior to 1st January 1995.
Moreover, The Egyptian Intellectual Property Law permits the registration of the collective trademark which owned by an entity like (CA) to distinguish the Chartered Accountants and (CPA) to distinguish the Certified Public Accountants,..... Etc. the application for collective trademark shall be submitted by the representative of the said entity.
Article no. 69 of the law no. 82 states that "collective trademarks is used to distinguish a product of a group of persons who belong to a specific entity, even where such entity has no industrial or commercial enterprise of its own. The application for registration of a collective trademark shall be submitted by a representative of such entity."
The trademark owner is always seeking to register his trademark to ensure his exclusive right to use it and to avoid any unfair competition from third parties, therefore, kindly check below the required documents to register your trademark in Egypt as follows:
1- A power of attorney notarized from the competent notary public in the country of the trademark's owner, then the said POA shall be legalized/certified from the Egyptian consulate.
2- Articles of incorporation or the commercial registry of the company to be legalized from the Egyptian consulate
3- A copy of the trademark.
4- The trademark class/classes.
The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.