The National Institute of Industrial Property of Argentina has made its trademark and designs data available on the EU Intellectual Property Office’s TMview and Designview search tools. As of November 20 2017, the integration of Argentina’s data brings the total number of participating offices on TMview to 62, with the system now providing information about and access to more than 47.6 million trademarks. Designview, meanwhile, boasts a roster of 61 participating offices, with 12.7 million designs accessible.
IP Australia, in partnership with Swinburne University of Technology and the University of Melbourne, has announced that it is developing a “single, internationally-linked trademark database” – TM-link. The platform will link trademark application data across different countries, enabling searches by company name, as well as by mark name and image. The tool will launch with data from Australia, Canada, the European Union, New Zealand and the United States, with plans to next incorporate filings from the United Kingdom, Germany, France, China, Japan and Korea. TM-link is currently accessible only by emailing [email protected].
Cui Shoudong, deputy director of the China Trademark Office, has expanded on efforts to tackle malicious trademark registrations. Speaking at this year’s China International Trademark Festival, he described a series of initiatives, including the establishment of a white list of prominent trademarks (and the corresponding scope of protection and application of laws) and the creation of a database of suspected malicious trademark hijackers.
Oman’s Ministry of Commerce and Industry has revealed figures related to its project to archive IP applications electronically. The office digitised just over 115,000 applications in 2017 up to November, with 112,000 being for trademarks and a further 3,500 for patents.
The managing director of the Uganda Registration Services Bureau has urged local businesses in the country to seek trademark protection in a bid to encourage competition. “You need to register your trademarks if you want to compete effectively and gain more profits – customers associate with brands, not company names,” he told a local business event in the country’s capital, Kampala.
United Arab Emirates
The Dubai Design and Fashion Council has signed a memorandum of understanding with the United Arab Emirates. The enhanced cooperation on IP matters set out in this document includes workshops and events designed to promote the creative industries throughout the country.
The Consumer Packaging Manufacturers Alliance (CPMA) has raised concerns over sales of illegal tobacco, after trading standards officers and Retail Express uncovered the United Kingdom’s first counterfeit standardised cigarette packs. The CPMA claims that the introduction of plain packaging has led to a rise in the illicit trade in tobacco by making it harder for consumers to differentiate between genuine and fake items – something that it warned of before the legislation was passed.
Speaking at the International Trademark Association leadership meeting in Washington DC, CEO Etienne Sanz de Acedo revealed that the association intends to assess a widened remit for itself, described as a “beyond trademarks” project. The proposal will be launched in 2020/2021. He also stated that the association will be conducting an office feasibility study to explore opening a regional base in Africa.
US Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) Trademark Commissioner Mary Boney Denison has revealed that the office plans to have USPTO staff members placed in the Department of Justice (DOJ) to aid efforts against fraudulent and misleading trademark solicitations. Speaking at a Trademark Public Advisory Committee meeting, she explained: “The fraud section [of the DOJ] doesn’t have the manpower to pursue many of these cases... [So] We have candidates over there being considered; they’ve had interviews, the process is well underway and hopefully we will get some people in the DOJ for a year or so to help send a message to the criminals that this is not acceptable.”