Samoa’s trademark membership lodged

The Samoa Government has lodged official documentation with the Madrid Protocol secretariat in Spain to formalise its membership of the international trademark system.

The Minister for Commerce Industry and Labor, Lautafi Fio Selafi Purcell, flew to Spain and deposited the instrument of accession on December 4.

The protocol will enter into force for Samoa on March 4, 2019 and will make Samoa the 103rd member of the international trademark system. 

Lautafi met with Francis Gurry, the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) director general, on December 4 to officially sign-off on Samoa’s accession. 

The Madrid system has described as a convenient and cost-effective solution for registering and managing trademarks worldwide. Individuals or organisations can file a single application and pay one set of fees to apply for protection in up to 118 countries.

Samoa’s decision to sign up to the system will from March 4 next year open the door to local brand owners to use the Madrid system to protect their trademarks. Current owners of international registrations will also be able to request a subsequent designation of Samoa, should they wish that their trademarks are also protected in Samoa.

The Samoan Government moved quickly to get the country signed up to the Madrid system in October this year, when a bill—the Intellectual Property Amendment Bill 2018—to amend the Intellectual Property Act 2011 was given a certificate of urgency and rushed through the House before it was passed. The Ministry for Commerce Industry and Labor oversaw the paperwork and its lodging by the Minister in Spain early this month.

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