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18 July 2017

Fees rise as trademark operations resume in northern Iraq; counterfeit problems persist

The Trademark Office in the northern Iraq region of Kurdistan has reopened its doors to trademark applications following a temporary suspension of operations. While costs have risen, the market should be on the radar of counsel as the market expands and counterfeiters look to capitalise.

01 July 2017

Notorious markets: where to police

In the second of a two-part series, we profile markets which were omitted from the Office of the US Trade Representative’s Notorious Markets List, but which brand owners should have on their radars. This issue, we turn our attention to Asia and Africa

22 June 2017

Most used counterfeit trade routes revealed as pressure on enforcement authorities continues to rise

New research has revealed that counterfeiters are using Hong Kong, the United Arab Emirates and Singapore as their main global trading hubs.

18 May 2017

Procedures and strategies for anti-counterfeiting: Nigeria

In spite of socio-economic challenges, Nigeria has continued to witness growth and expansion, diversification and a greater level of transparence. Contributing factors to this are Nigeria’s creative industries, which have grown somewhat informally, as well as a fast-emerging retail culture.

18 May 2017

Procedures and strategies for anti-counterfeiting: Israel

According to the Customs Ordinance, Customs is entitled to detain imported goods that are suspected of infringing trademarks. It is possible, although not mandatory, for rights holders to file a complaint while recording their registered trademarks with Customs. It is highly recommended that such a complaint be filed if the rights holder is aware of specific shipments of infringing goods bound for Israel or if it wishes to bring certain trademarks to the attention of Customs.

31 March 2017

ACFD recognises importance of protecting registered trademarks against use as trade names

Traditionally, the approach of the Anti-counterfeiting and Fraud Department (ACFD) to trademark infringement was that trademark rights may be enforced only against infringing goods. However, a recent case shows that the ACDF now seems to be recognising the importance of protecting a registered owner’s trademark against use as a trade name.

29 September 2016

Abu Dhabi Customs launches recordal system

As Abu Dhabi Customs launches a formal trademark registration recordal system, it becomes the fifth of the seven emirates in the United Arab Emirates to adopt a customs recordal system for trademarks.

01 September 2016

Challenging but not hopeless: anti-counterfeiting in Africa

Counterfeiting is a serious problem in Africa. While laws are in place to tackle illicit trade, practical enforcement is often complicated by local capacity and attitudes

15 July 2016

Online trademark infringement - a criminal offence

Trademark owners have a new defence mechanism available to them in the fight against online infringement and counterfeiting in Nigeria. The Cybercrime Act 2015 deals with a range of cyber issues, including cybersquatting.

08 May 2015

New Industrial Property Law brings important changes

The new Industrial Property Law No 23/13, which amended the existing act, has come into force. Among other things, there will now be substantive examination of trademark applications, and the opposition procedure has been improved in that the term for issuing decisions has been reduced and, in cases where the applicant does not respond to a notice of opposition within a two-month period, the office will go ahead and make a decision.

01 April 2015

Counterfeit goods are recycled instead of re-exported in landmark customs case

Previously, when counterfeit goods were found in Dubai, the Dubai Customs Authority re-exported them back to where they came from, which was generally seen as unsatisfactory for brand owners. However, in a recent case before Dubai Customs involving a major tobacco company, a promising and unique decision was taken and executed for the benefit of the brand owner.

16 February 2015

Amendments to Anti-counterfeit Act come into force

The Statute Law (Miscellaneous Amendment) Act of 2014 has made several amendments to key statutes in Kenya, one of them being the Anti-counterfeit Act. A welcomed addition to the Anti-counterfeit Act is Section 34A, which provides for the compounding of offences. In addition, a new Sub-section 16(4) establishes an Intellectual Property Enforcement and Co-ordination Advisory Committee.

04 July 2014

Call for IP community to keep up pressure over murdered customs officer

The myth that counterfeiting is a victimless crime was sharply dispelled in 2011 when South African customs official Johan Nortje was gunned down in front of his house, in what was described by police sources as a “hit”. This week it has been reported that the murder case has been withdrawn, and IP practitioners are being urged to keep the pressure on authorities.

09 June 2014

Key amendments introduced as Anti-Commercial Fraud Law progresses towards enactment

Following the passage of the draft UAE Anti-Commercial Fraud Law through the Federal National Council on March 4 2014, further amendments have been made to key provisions of the draft law as it progresses towards enactment. Several changes will have an impact on brand owners and their ability to enforce their IP rights in the UAE.

11 March 2014

Anti-Commercial Fraud Law passes through Federal National Council

The draft Anti-Commercial Fraud Law, aimed at combating counterfeit goods and other forms of commercial fraud, has passed through the UAE’s Federal National Council. Although the draft law contains a number of positive new measures for brand owners, there are a number of provisions which have given rise to cause for concern.