On 19 June 2019 the Permanent Secretary of the Federal Ministry of Industry, Trade and Investment inaugurated a new Trade Mark Tribunal, with the view of accelerating oppositions and related matters.

The new Trade Mark Tribunal will function as the administrative arm of the Registry of Trade Marks and the idea is that, in practice, the Registrar of Trade Marks will delegate this administrative function to competent officers while under the supervision of the Registrar.

Trade mark practitioners are hopeful that the establishment of the Tribunal will expedite the dispensation and resolution of opposition matters in Nigeria. It is anticipated that the new Tribunal will also provide some much-needed relief with the backlogs currently experienced in opposition matters, which are largely due to the release of 15 Trade Mark Journals between 2018 and 2019. Whether or not the Tribunal will bring the necessary relief, however, remains to be seen.

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