Namibia: Industrial Property Act, 2012 (Act No. 1 of 2012)

August 1, 2018

Namibia: The Industrial Property Act, 2012 (Act No. 1 of 2012) was signed into law by the President on February 28, 2012, and entered into force on August 1, 2018, according to the Government Notice No. 113 of 2018. It repeals the Patents, Designs, Trade Marks and Copyright Act, 1916, the Patents and Designs Proclamation, 1923 and the Trade Marks in South West Africa Act, 1973.

The Act provides for significant changes to IP legislation in Namibia including inter alia: (i) the implementation of the international registration system for patents, industrial designs and trademarks; (ii) the establishment of a 20-year patent term; (iii) the introduction of a substantive examination system for patents; (iv) the protection of well-known trademarks under Article 6bis of the Paris Convention and the recognition of the registration of collective marks; (v) the reduction to three years of the non-use grace period for trademarks; and (vi) the creation of the Industrial Property Office and the Industrial Property (IP) Tribunal.

The Act aims to ensure compliance with the provisions of the IP treaties administered under WIPO, the WTO and ARIPO.