It has always been the practice of the Industrial Property
Institute ("IPI") of Mozambique to
prohibit the refiling of trade marks that have been finally
refused, which has posed a serious obstacle to trade mark
applicants who wish to refile their applications in Mozambique for
Refiling provides the applicant with an opportunity to consider
the options available to overcome obstacles posed by earlier trade
marks, or refusals based on distinctiveness. A trade mark that
exists on the register and poses a bar to the registration of the
initial application may have subsequently expired, become
vulnerable to removal on the basis of non-use, abandoned or simply
withdrawn, and will no longer pose a bar to the applicant's
"refiled" application. On 2 September 2016, the IPI of
Mozambique issued an official letter in an attempt to provide
clarity on the issue of refiling. According to the official notice,
applicants will now be allowed to refile trade mark applications
that were previously and finally refused.
A new Mozambique Industrial Property Code was approved on 31
December 2015. The new code, published under Decree no. 47/2015,
came into force on 31 March 2016 and replaced the 2006 Industrial
Property Code. There are no provisions in this code that prohibit
an applicant from filing an application for the registration of a
trade mark that has been previously (and finally) refused by the
IPI. It is important to note that refiled applications will be
subjected to the same requirements and examination process as the
first filed application.
Individuals and entities that have previously filed trade mark
applications in Mozambique that were finally refused are advised to
consider refiling such applications in an attempt to obtain
adequate trade mark protection in Mozambique.
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.
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The African Regional Intellectual Property Organization's ("ARIPO's") amended Harare Protocol on Patents and Industrial Designs (the "Protocol"), came into effect on 1 January 2017 and includes some important changes.
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