On July 1, 2022, Myanmar’s Ministry of Commerce issued Notification No. 44/2022, which specifies forms for filings under the 2019 Trademark Law. While the “soft opening” period of Myanmar’s Intellectual Property Department (IPD) is approaching two years and the date of the full opening is still undetermined, this new notification is a substantial development and can be considered progress pointing toward full implementation of the Trademark Law.
The notification came with an annex describing the following 19 forms (issued in both Myanmar and English language on the IPD website):
- Application for Registration of a Mark
- Appointment of a Representative
- Request for Reinstatement of an Application
- Request for Correction of an Application
- Request for Withdrawal of an Application
- Request to Limit the List of Goods or Services in an Application
- Request to Divide an Application
- Opposition to Registration of a Mark
- Request to Issue Certified Copies of a Registration Certificate
- Request for Amendment of Registration of a Mark
- Request for Renewal of Registration of a Mark
- Request for Recordation of Transfer of Registration of a Mark
- Request for Recordation of a License of a Registered Mark
- Request to Cancel Recordation of a License of a Registered Mark
- Request for Invalidation of a Registered Mark
- Request for Cancellation of a Registered Mark
- Request to Change the Representative
- Request for Time Extension
- Application for Appeal
The annex provides detailed requirements for each form corresponding to a particular request described in the Trademark Law. However, use and submission of the forms will need to wait for further procedural guidance from the IPD.
Now that the authority has issued the forms for matters under the Trademark Law, the next step will be the announcement of fees for each action, after which the IPD will be ready to enter the second phase of its soft opening. During the second phase, existing marks (recorded under Myanmar’s old system or used in the country) may be filed with the IPD using the published forms—either in-person by the mark owner or through a local representative, who can use the online system. Furthermore, upon commencement of the soft opening’s second phase, the relevant fees must be paid for applications already submitted during the soft opening’s first phase.
Mark owners who have yet to refile their existing marks at the IPD should review their trademark portfolios and dossiers to prepare for submission of applications during the upcoming second phase. All marks filed during the IPD’s soft opening (regardless of which phase) will be assigned the same application date.
We will continue to monitor developments as officials issue guidance (e.g., directives on formalities) related to implementation of the Trademark Law. For more information on protecting intellectual property in Myanmar, please contact Tilleke & Gibbins at [email protected].