January 18, 2019

Bahrain: Updates Patent and Utility Model Fees

The Kingdom of Bahrain recently announced a series of governmental decisions which are aimed at updating the IPR fees and developing the taxation system in the country. As a result the official fees related to patents and utility models have increased drastically. The new prices took effect December 14, 2018. The annual fees have risen almost nine times what they were previously. In addition, value-added tax will be applied to all IPR types in Bahrain as of January 1, 2019. The standard VAT rate will be 5%. Source:
January 17, 2019

UK: Changes to Trademark Law as of January 2019

Effective January 14, 2019 some important changes were made to the UK trademark law. The reforms affect trademark applications and registrations, trademark management and enforcement of trademarks. Trademark owners will now receive trademark renewal notifications earlier, at six months prior to renewal date as opposed to the previous four. If the trademark owner fails to renew the trademark, restoration is possible if the failure to renew is “unintentional.” This changes the previous test where the UKIPO had to assess whether it was “just” to renew the trademark. Consequently, the restoration process should become easier and more objective. Additionally, applications no longer need to be accompanied by a graphical representation of a trademark, but applicants may choose instead from a wide variety of formats, including submitting sound and video files online. Source:
January 4, 2019

Bahrain: Updates its patent and utility model fees and introduces VAT

The Kingdom of Bahrain has recently announced a series of governmental decisions, which are aimed at updating the IPR fees and developing the taxation system in the country. Accordingly, the Bahraini Ministry of Industry, Commerce and Tourism has drastically increased the official fees related to patents and utility models. The new prices have been applied since December 14, 2018. The updated fee schedule stipulates the fees for filing a patent application almost 7 times higher than the previous one, i.e. 540 BHD and 270 BHD for legal entities and natural persons correspondingly. Besides, the fee for grant and publication of the patent has been increased by 3.2 times, while the substantive examination fee will further be regulated by the Office. The annual fees have risen as well, with some of them by almost 9 times. Furthermore, the procedural fees concerning utility models have been established at a rate less by half than the one for the patents. The annuities for natural persons and legal entities start from 50 BHD and 100 BHD for the 2nd year and reach 150 BHD and 300 BHD for the 10th year of utility model validity accordingly. In addition, value-added tax will be applied to all IPR types in Bahrain as of January 1, 2019. The standard VAT rate will be 5%, as it has been stipulated by the Common VAT Agreement of the States of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC). Bahrain will become the third GCC country to introduce the VAT after Saudi Arabia and the UAE, which have been imposing the VAT since the beginning of 2018. Source:  
January 3, 2019

Sweden: Amendments to Trademark Laws

Effective January 1, 2019, several changes to the Swedish Trademark Act and related constitutions will come into force. The changes mark the end of a revision that started at EU level almost ten years ago. Some of the important changes include: The graphical representation requirement for trademarks is abandoned. Trademark duration starts from the date of application and not from the date of registration Trademark registrations can be renewed at the earliest 6 months before and at the latest 6 months after the expiration date Launch of new e-service for trademark renewal In addition, a new law, the Company Name Act, replaces the existing Trade Names Act of 1974. Source:,  
December 5, 2018

Georgia: Madrid E-Filing Now Available

The National Intellectual Property Center of Georgia- Sakpatenti recently joined the WIPO-administered e-filing program, by means of which Georgian users will be able to file their international applications electronically.  This will simplify the procedure of extension of trademarks to the member states of the “Protocol Relating to the Madrid Agreement Concerning the International Registration of Marks since 1998, Source:  
December 5, 2018

China: Amendments to Trademark Laws

The Trademark Office of China National Intellectual Property Administration (CNIPA) provides online filing services for international applications (Madrid).  E-filing is available on CNIPA’s website   Source:
December 5, 2018

Canada: Amendments to Trademark Laws to be in Force on June 17, 2019

On November 14, 2018, the new Trademark Regulations were published in the Canada Gazette Part II, which set forth Canada’s new trademark regime which is scheduled to enter into force on June 17, 2019. These amendments impact all aspects of trademark selection, filing procedures, oppositions, registration and enforcement. Some of the important changes include: – Expansion of non-traditional marks – Declarations of use no longer be required at the time of application – Goods and services must be classified according to the Nice Agreement – Introduction of a class-based fee structure – Priority claims can be asserted from any prior application – Ability to divide applications and registrations – Reduction of term of protection from 15 years to 10 years – Accession to the Madrid Protocol – The new distinctiveness examination criteria will apply to all pending applications Source:
November 6, 2018

Europe: Sharp Rise in Patent Applications for Self-Driving Vehicles

Recent statistics for patent applications reveal that innovation in self-driving vehicles (SDV) is accelerating fast and could signal the coming of a transport revolution. The number of European patent applications related to autonomous driving has grown 20 times faster than other technologies in recent years.  Patent applications for autonomous driving increased by 330%, between 2011 and 2017, compared to 16% across all technologies in the same period.  The study was carried out in co-operation with the European Council for Automotive R&D (EUCAR).   Source:
November 2, 2018

Bahrain: New Value Added Tax

Following the recent introduction of value added tax in Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, VAT is expected to be introduced in Bahrain as of January 1, 2019. The VAT will apply to goods and services at the standard rate of five percent, with some limited exceptions on basic food items, healthcare, and education. It is expected that the remaining GCC countries, which include Kuwait, Oman and Qatar to follow suit and introduce the VAT. Source:
October 31, 2018

Kuwait: Online Trademark Renewal Filing Now

Kuwait has updated its system and switched from manual filing of renewal applications to online filing.  However, the transfer of data to the online portal is not yet complete.  Agents will need to coordinate with the Kuwaiti Trademark Office to complete the trademark details in the portal when filing the renewal request online. Source:  JAH & Co., IP, Qatar