The long-awaited launch of Myanmar's new trade marks system will take place in two stages – a Soft Opening which commences on 1 October 2020 for approximately 6 months, and a Grand Opening around mid-2021. The Soft Opening period and date of the Grand Opening are subject to official confirmation.
What can be done during the Soft Opening?
1. Re-file recorded marks
Marks which have been "recorded" with Myanmar's Office of Registration of Deeds ('ORD') before 1 October 2020 can be re-filed for registration under the new Trademark Law. There is no automatic registration of recorded marks.
2. File for marks in use
Marks that have been used in Myanmar (but not recorded) can also be filed during the Soft Opening. The application date allocated for these filings is expected to mirror the date of the Grand Opening.
All other marks can only be filed after the Grand Opening. Accordingly, trade mark owners should take advantage of the Soft Opening to secure protection based on the earlier date of recordal or use.
What should trade mark owners prepare for the Soft Opening?
The key requirements for re-filing a recorded mark are:
- The trade mark owner's registered name and address;
- A specimen of the mark;
- The specification of goods and services;
- A copy of the Declaration of Ownership / evidence of renewal with the ORD;
- The details of any colour claims;
- The translation / transliteration of any non-English terms in the mark.
All of the above should be consistent with the information in the Declaration of Ownership.
In the case of marks which have been used but not recorded, applicants should provide evidence of use in Myanmar. Relevant evidence includes Cautionary Notices published in a Myanmar newspaper, invoices and receipts, and marketing material.
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.