29 October 2020

On 28 August 2020, the Myanmar Ministry of Commerce issued Order No. 63 of 2020 announcing the long-awaited commencement date of the soft opening of the new trademark registration system (“soft opening period”). The duration of the soft opening period, which began on 1 October 2020, has yet to be announced although it is anticipated to last for six months.

Re-filing of trademarks

The soft opening period is open exclusively to:

  • trademark owners who had availed themselves of Myanmar’s old registration system by filing a Declaration of Ownership of their mark with the Office of the Registration of Deeds (“ORD”); and 
  • trademark owners whose marks have been in actual use in Myanmar whether registered with the ORD or not,to re-file their trademarks with the Myanmar Department of Intellectual Property (“MDIP”).

No new trademark applications 

During the soft opening period, it is not possible to file “new” trademark applications.

Trademark owners who do not meet the criteria set out above will have to wait until the official opening of the new registration system before they are able to file any “new” trademark applications.

Trademark application process

The re-filed trademarks must match the details recorded in the Declaration of Ownership (“Declaration”). Applications by any foreign trademark owners must be made via their trademark agents in Myanmar.

Further details of the official fees, specific documentation and other information required are expected to be released in due course, although trademark owners should in the meantime collate the relevant information and documents if there is any interest to re-file their trademarks.