Albania

Cannabis counterfeits; the campus consequence of Brunetti; and Anheuser-Busch eyes esports market: news digest

In our latest news round-up, we look at how Alibaba is seeking increased brand engagement, Anheuser-Busch making a play for the esports industry, a USPTO call for comments, Albania’s accession to the Geneva Act and much more.

Cannabis counterfeits; the campus consequence of <em>Brunetti</em>; and Anheuser-Busch eyes esports market: news digest

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13 Jul 2020

Proposed changes to the industrial property law – what you need to know

Albania’s General Directorate of Industrial Property has published proposed amendments to the Law on Industrial Property for public consultation. This update reviews the key proposals that IP rights owners and practitioners should be aware of. Read more

23 Apr 2020

Procedures and strategies for anti-counterfeiting: Western Balkans

With a population of more than 20 million divided among seven jurisdictions, the Western Balkans has the potential to be fertile ground for the manufacture and distribution of counterfeit goods. Read more

13 May 2019

Procedures and strategies for anti-counterfeiting: Western Balkans

With a population of more than 20 million divided among seven jurisdictions, the Western Balkans has the potential to be a fertile ground for the production and distribution of counterfeit goods. Due to its geographical location, the Western Balkans is well connected to other regions and continents. Read more

11 Jul 2018

Albania introduces new trademark regulation – what you need to know

A new trademark regulation has entered into force in Albania, clarifying a range of issues raised by the changes to the Industrial Property Law introduced in March 2017.

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Anti-Counterfeiting

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18 May 2017

Western Balkans

With a population of more than 20 million divided among seven jurisdictions, the Western Balkans has the potential to be a fertile ground for the production and distribution of counterfeit goods. Read more

30 Jun 2015

Appeal court confirms Braun's victory against importer of fake 'Brown' goods

The Appellate Court of Tirana has rejected an appeal lodged by an Albanian importer of epilators bearing the mark BROWN and upheld the decision of the First Instance Court of Tirana in favour of Braun GmbH. The ruling clarifies the extent of Albanian Customs’ authority to inspect and detain goods suspected of infringing trademark rights.

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6 Nov 2014

Decision clarifies scope of Customs' authority to seize and detain suspected infringing goods

The First Instance Court of Tirana has issued a highly anticipated decision in a case initiated by Braun GmbH against an Albanian importer. The court considered whether, under the Albanian Customs Regulation, the Albanian customs authorities can intercept and seize goods bearing marks that are confusingly similar to registered trademarks.

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Enforcement and Litigation

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21 Dec 2017

Litigation procedures and strategies: Albania

In Albania, the Law on Industrial Property, being the main applicable law, has been subject to various amendments. We look at the key changes, and how they affect prosecution and enforcement strategies. Read more

27 Apr 2017

Albania amends Industrial Property Law but important issues remain unaddressed

Multiple changes to the Albanian Industrial Property Law have entered into force with the aim to harmonise Albanian law with the EU acquis. However, many important issues remain unaddressed and IP professionals fear that certain changes may adversely affect Albanian IP case law.

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27 May 2016

New regulation on customs enforcement enters into force in Albania

A new regulation on customs enforcement of IP rights, modelled after EU Regulation 608/2013, entered into force in Albania on January 12 2016.

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4 Sep 2015

Courts show willingness to follow ECJ's criteria in trademark cases

In two recent decisions issued by the Administrative Appeal Court of Tirana and the First Instance Court of Tirana, both courts have found the criteria established by the ECJ to be an important source for Albanian trademark practice. Although the courts ruled in different types of proceedings (an opposition and a cancellation action), they both addressed IP-related issues that are rarely considered by Albanian courts.

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Government/Policy

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27 Jan 2017

Proposed amendments to Law on Industrial Property

The Council of Ministers has approved the draft law “On some changes and amendments to Law No 9947, dated July 7 2008, on Industrial Property”. Among other things, the draft law introduces a definition of what constitutes a ‘trademark’, provides for the first time that a trademark application can be refused if it violates the rights conferred by an unregistered trademark, and introduces a new mechanism for the revocation and invalidation of a registered trademark.

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30 Apr 2012

IP infringement treated as criminal offence under amended Criminal Code

The amendments to the Albanian Criminal Code have entered into force. Before the amendments, the Criminal Code did not contain any provisions concerning the protection of intellectual property. However, new provisions dealing with fines and penalties applicable in case of infringement of IP rights have now been added.

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Online

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14 May 2013

Foreign companies no longer need local subsidiary to register '.al' domain names

The Albanian Electronic and Postal Communication Authority, the registrar for '.al' domain names, has introduced amendments to the Regulation on the Registration and Administration of '.al' Domain Names and Subdomains. Importantly, foreign companies may now register '.al' domain names, while previously, this right belonged only to Albanian citizens and entities, or foreign companies with subsidiaries in the Albanian territory.

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Portfolio Management

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29 Sep 2015

Amendments introduce definition of collective and certification marks for the first time

The Council of Ministers has enacted amendments to Decision No 1706 “On the Approval of the Regulation for the Registration of Trademarks and Service Marks”. Following the introduction of a new section entitled “Collective Trademarks”, the regulation gives a general definition of a 'collective trademark' for the first time. A new clause entitled "Certification Trademarks” has also been added.

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4 Mar 2015

Global energy company victorious in opposition against local competitor

The Appeal Board of the Albanian Patent and Trademark Office has upheld an opposition by global energy company Repsol SA, the owner of international registrations for REPSOL, against the registration of the mark REXOIL by a Turkish competitor. The board found that the marks covered identical goods and that there was a considerable degree of visual and phonetic similarity.

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30 Jan 2015

Amendment introduces bad-faith registration as ground for invalidity

In the latest amendment to the Law on Industrial Property, the legislature has dealt more extensively with the concept of ‘bad faith’ by introducing a ground for invalidity of a trademark registration: the first paragraph of Article 173 provides that interested persons can request that the court declare that a trademark is invalid in cases where the application for registration was made in bad faith.

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13 Sep 2012

Appeal Board issues interesting decision on assessment of distinctive character

The Appeal Board of the Patent and Trademark Office has held that there was a likelihood of confusion between the mark CHIPS’Y KING and the earlier CHiPSY marks. Interestingly, the board emphasised the importance of identifying the distinctive character of the marks when assessing the likelihood of confusion. This can be regarded as a step forward for Albanian practice because, previously, the board did not pay specific attention to this factor.

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Trademark law

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13 Apr 2015

Spar victorious in trademark and copyright infringement action against local competitor

The Appellate Court of Tirana has upheld a decision of the First Instance Court finding that the use by Albanian retailer Iliria DC of the marks DESPAR, INTERSPAR and EUROPSPAR infringed Spar International’s registered SPAR marks and its copyright in the SPAR logo.

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14 Oct 2014

Amended Law on Industrial Property seems to favour trademarks over trade names

The amendments to the Law on Industrial Property entered into force on July 10 2014. This update deals with the relation between earlier rights, such as trade names, and trademarks. In particular, with these latest amendments, it seems that the legislature has offered certain advantages to registered trademarks over trade names.

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7 Oct 2014

Appellate Court confirms Red Bull’s win in trade dress lawsuit against local competitor

The Appellate Court of Tirana has upheld the decision of the First Instance Court of Tirana in Red Bull’s trade dress lawsuit against Albanian energy drink producer Arseni. This ruling is interesting in light of the total lack of Albanian case law on unfair competition, and represents encouraging news for trademark owners seeking to enforce their rights in the country.

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18 Jul 2014

Amendments to Law on Industrial Property enter into force

Law 55/2014, which amends Law No 9947 of July 7 2008 on Industrial Property, has entered into force. Among other things, the amendments have introduced significant novelties with regard to collective and certification trademarks. For example, as of July 10 2014, applicants are able to apply for and register certification trademarks for the first time.

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