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01 May 2019

OAPI: change is on the way

The African Intellectual Property Organisation’s recent changes to the Bangui Agreement are due to have a significant effect on trademark rights. Although the revised agreement is not yet in force, IP practitioners should start familiarising themselves with the new system

23 April 2019

Turkey trademark uplift, INPI announces Africa IP adviser, and China counterfeit crackdown: news digest

In our latest edition, we look at INTA and the National Trade Foundation for Education partnering up to spread the anti-counterfeiting message, a study highlights how brands need to showcase their authenticity, and much more.

24 July 2018

“Don’t panic” – new entrants to Madrid Protocol give mixed feedback on their experience since accession

​​​​​​​Law firm practitioners in jurisdictions that have adopted the Madrid Protocol in recent years have shared their experience in an exclusive survey. While some praised the system, other were scathing about its impact.

04 December 2017

OAPI steps up efforts to expand scope of geographical indications across sub-Saharan Africa

OAPI has launched a new programme in an ongoing effort to introduce and expand geographical indications (GIs) across its 17 member states. This is the first major project from OAPI’s new director general.

14 November 2016

Cash prizes for distinctive trademarks? OAPI urges IP offices to reward innovative use of brands

The African Intellectual Property Organisation (OAPI) held its first annual Brand Awards recently, in which cash prizes and trademark filing vouchers were given to local brands judged to be distinctive. Talking to World Trademark Review, OAPI’s director of legal affairs and cooperation, Maurice Batanga, says that the initiative has proved effective – and encourages other IP offices to consider a similar approach to promote innovative use of trademarks.

20 September 2016

Cameroon criminalises IP infringement

Cameroon has made it clear that it takes the infringement of IP rights very seriously and has brought into force a new law that amends its Penal Code, bringing IP infringement firmly into the realm of criminal law.

15 August 2016

Venturing into Africa: law firm opportunity and risk in an evolving IP landscape

For this week’s blog post from the WTR 1000 research team, it is timely to consider the current state of trademark protection in Africa.

29 January 2016

OAPI suspends law firm; suspended agent alleges ‘dictatorship’ OAPI is stifling anti-Madrid Protocol sentiment

The African Intellectual Property Organisation (OAPI) has suspended two IP attorneys in Cameroon, and in turn prohibited parties from using their law firm for any IP services in proceedings before it, in what one of the lawyers contends is a continuation of a bitter battle between the organisation and a group of agents who claim that its accession to the Madrid Protocol was implemented illegally.

11 May 2015

Anti-Madrid collective vows to challenge brand owners’ trademark applications

The continuing tension between the African Intellectual Property Organisation (OAPI) and accredited agents in the region who oppose its recent accession to the Madrid Protocol shows no sign of abating.