New countries posed to join ARIPO for trade marks

Mozambique and Zambia are expected to accede to the Banjul Protocol, the international treaty making provision for the registration of trade marks with ARIPO, soon. This is according to the Director General of ARIPO, Fernando dos Santos, at INTA recently. ARIPO is an African regional filing system in terms of which member states can be designated to be covered by a single registration. Although ARIPO as a body has nineteen members (states that have acceded to the Lusaka Agreement that founded it), currently only ten of those member states have acceded to the Banjul Protocol. The addition of two more countries will therefore be welcomed by rights holders that wish to protect their trade marks

Plant breeders’ rights in Kenya

Kenya is estimated to have a population of approximately 40 million people, of which an estimated 75% make their living from the agricultural sector in some way or another. According to some sources, the agricultural sector accounts for as much as 25% of Kenya’s gross domestic product. It is thus safe to say that agriculture plays an integral role in the Kenyan economy. Recent erratic weather patterns have resulted in unpredictable yields with many farmers having lost a substantial part of their crops to drought. There is thus a continuous need for new plant varieties, such as drought tolerant agricultural crops, to be introduced into the Kenyan agricultural sector in order to support the Ke

Rouse Africa Visits OAPI.

Representatives of Rouse Africa, Maura Canavan and Claire Brown visited the OAPI headquarters office in Yaounde, Cameroon last month. They were hosted by Maurice Batanga, Director of Legal Affairs and received a very warm welcome from all the OAPI staff they met. They were given a full tour of the new OAPI offices and received an insight into the day to day workings of OAPI. OAPI's accession to the Madrid system for the international registration of trade marks was an important talking point on the agenda and it was interesting to hear that international applications designating OAPI currently made up nearly a third of the total applications they received in the past year! Given that the Ma

Rwanda Makes Changes to its IP Laws

On 20th April the Rwandan government released a special gazette notice setting out recently promulgated laws. The 92 page document touches on changes to various IP laws with a majority of these changes coming into force on between March and April 2016. The gazette notice found here is drafted in 3 languages Kinyarwanda, French and English. This post highlights the changes we noted in our first review of the gazette notice. Seeds and Plant varieties law promulgated. After a sustained campaign by ARIPO and the Rwandan development board, the Rwandan government signed into law the Seeds and Plants varieties Act adding to the bundle of IP rights protected in Rwanda. Rights holders will now be ab

New Rules for Trade Mark Renewals in Ethiopia to Take Effect Immediately

The Ethiopian Intellectual Property Office has issued a notice requiring trade mark proprietors whose trade marks are coming up for renewal to ensure that the renewals are published in the official gazette and a local newspaper. This notice seeks to enforce the renewal procedure as found in the 2006 Trade Mark Registration and Protection Proclamation Act (No. 25) which details the requirements for the publication of renewed trade marks. The renewal procedures will apply immediately and applicants renewing their trade marks will proceed as follows: Trade mark proprietors appply to renew their trade mark. Once accepted the Ethiopian Intellectual Property Office (EIPO) will record the renewals

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