The long-anticipated Trademark Law becomes effective on 1 April 2023March 17, 2023
On 1 April 2023, the Trademark Law will come into effect according to the State Administration Council’s Notification No. 82/2023 dated 10 March 2023.
Implementation of the law is being done in phases. Prior to its effectiveness, during “Soft Opening Phase 1”, which is currently ongoing, the Myanmar Intellectual Property Department (“MIPD”) under the Ministry of Commerce is accepting applications for the re-registration of old marks that were already registered with the Office of the Registration of Deeds (“ORD”).
After the effectiveness of the Trademark Law, the MIPD will commence Soft Opening Phase 2, during which the mark owners who have applied for reregistration pay the filing fees as officially announced by the MIPD (during a panel discussion the MIPD unofficially indicated that filing fees will be MMK150,000 per mark, subject to trademark classification). Mark owners are also required to appoint an agent or representative for processing the application, via the completion and submission of Form TM2, “Appointment of the Representative or Agent”. If the mark owners are foreign residents, a notarized Form TM2 must be submitted.
In Phase 3 which is the grand opening for trademark registration, the MIPD will begin examination of the applications and required documents. Subsequently, the MIPD will provide the filing date for each application that meets its criteria. If an application is successful, the mark owner will then be required to pay the registration fees. Mark owners will still be able to register old marks during Phase 3, but only for a specified period of time. This is also the phase during which the registration of new marks under the World Intellectual Property Organization (“WIPO”) system will begin. The interval between Phase 2 and Phase 3 will be approximately one month.
In Phase 4 which is after grant opening period, the MIPD will only be accepting applications for new trademark registrations under the WIPO system.
Despite the upcoming effectiveness of the Trademark Law on 1 April 2023, the ORD continues to process applications for the declaration of trademark ownership for trademark registrations.
VDB Loi would be happy to assist with the registration under the WIPO system. Please do not hesitate to contact us should you need any assistance or have any questions.