Lithuania's two CAMELs must co-exist


In Japan Tobacco Inc v Schrader-Bridgeport International Inc (Case 2.50-445-2003), the Lithuanian District Court for Vilnius has ruled that although the plaintiff's CAMEL mark is well known in Lithuania, it cannot order the cancellation of the defendant's registration of the same mark for different goods.

Schrader-Bridgeport registered the mark CAMEL in relation to vehicles (ie, Class 12 of the Nice Classification) after Japan Tobacco had already registered the same mark in relation to tobacco products (ie, Class 34). Japan Tobacco instituted cancellation proceedings on the basis of its ownership and prior use of the mark.

The district court found that although Japan Tobacco's mark is well known in Lithuania today, the plaintiff had not proved that it was well known in 1995 when Schrader-Bridgeport filed an application to register the same mark for different goods. As a result, the court ruled that it is unable to order the cancellation of Schrader-Bridgeport's registration.

Japan Tobacco will appeal the district court's decision.

Valentina Sergeyeva, Strahlberg & Partners, Riga (with the assistance of Patent and Trademarks Agency 'Metida')

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