As Myanmar’s long-awaited Trademark Law came into force on April 1, 2023, the government issued several pieces of implementing legislation, including the Trademark Rules. Together, this legislation gives shape to Myanmar’s new trademark system and paves the way for the eventual “grand opening” under the Trademark Law.
The first piece of legislation, Notification 17/2023 of the Ministry of Commerce (MOC), set out the Trademark Rules. The rules contain detailed provisions on the registration and examination of marks, opposition to registration, priority claims, and criteria for well-known marks. The rules allow for substantive examination of trademark registration applications to begin.
The second piece of legislation (MOC Notification 1/2023) established the Intellectual Property Agency (IP Agency). Made up of senior government figures, IP experts, and representatives of civil society, the IP Agency is responsible for implementing trademark policy and hearing administrative appeals against decisions by the trademark registrar.
The IP Agency’s first notification set the official fees for requests and applications to the Intellectual Property Department (IPD), including a fee of MMK 150,000 (approx. USD 72) per class for filing a trademark application.
Finally, the IPD issued two procedural announcements. Announcement No. 1/2023 confirmed that the second phase of the “soft opening” will commence on April 3, 2023. As explained in our previous update, during the second phase of the soft opening, mark owners who have already filed trademark applications with the IPD must pay the official filing fees. Announcement No. 2/2023 specified the ways in which these fees can be paid.
Now that the Trademark Law has come into force and implementing legislation has been issued, mark owners should prepare to pay the necessary filing fees and submit their notarized Appointment of Representative (TM-2) forms to the IPD.
We will continue to monitor developments related to the new trademark system. For more information on protecting intellectual property in Myanmar, or for assistance in processing trademark applications, please contact Tilleke & Gibbins at [email protected].