Myanmar recently passed the Myanmar’s Trademark Law (“TML”) providing a codified framework for the protection of trademarks in the country. Myanmar till date did not have special laws specifically dealing with intellectual property, hence the newly enacted law (Myanmar recently also passed a new patent legislation) has paved way to a plethora of changes to Myanmar’s IP framework, making IP protection more formal and uniform.

Earlier, the process of recording ownership of trademarks in Myanmar was vested with the general law of registration of properties and the registration of trademarks was governed by the common statute for registration of properties i.e. the Deeds Registration Law 2018. With the advent of the new law related to trademarks, Myanmar Intellectual Property Office (“MIPO”) will be established which shall execute a formal trademarks registration process. Aligning itself with the global trend, Myanmar will now shift from a ‘first-to-use system’ for claiming trademark ownership to a ‘first-to-file system’. Some of the main features of this new law include provisions for registering well-known marks; recognition to various types of marks such as trademarks, collective marks, certification marks, 3D marks (shapes and packaging), geographical indications; acceptance of priority claims, series marks applications and multi-class applications; filing documents either in English or Myanmarian language; increased penalties for infringement cases etc.

It is anticipated that by the introduction of the new law, the process of trademarks registration, prosecution and litigation would be expedited and streamlined.

Compiled by: Adv. Sachi Kapoor | Concept & Edited by: Dr. Mohan Dewan

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