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Myanmar: Order No. 63/2020 of August 28, 2020, of the Ministry of Commerce

October 1, 2020

Myanmar: The Order No. 63/2020 of August 28, 2020, of the Ministry of Commerce was issued pursuant to subsection (a) of Section 93 of the new Trademarks Law (Law No. 3/2019 of January 30, 2019).

This Order aims to facilitate the transition from a "first to use" to a "first to file" system for trademark registration in Myanmar, as provided in the new Trademarks Law. As a part of this transition, the Trademarks Law requires existing trademark owners to re-register their trademarks under the new system, in order to enjoy registered trademark rights.

The Order provides, inter alia, the following elements:

(i) Enabling existing owners of a trademark registered at the Deeds and Documents Registration Office or owners of a trademark, which is not registered but is actually used (hereinafter "existing trademark owners") to submit a registration application in order to enjoy the rights relating to registered marks ("Rights of Priority"), in accordance with subsection (b) of Section 93 of the Trademarks Law. Only existing trademark owners may enjoy this priority right. The existing trademark owners must submit their registration application to the Registration Office via their online facility from October 1, 2020, to obtain priority rights over the trademark;

(ii) Requiring the re-registration application to initially be directed through law firms and service provider companies, and only subsequently allowing for direct application by the trademark owners themselves;

(iii) Introducing a list of documentary evidence to demonstrate that the applicant is an existing trademark owner; and

(iv) Stating that the official application filing fees and the payment methods will be declared before the entry into force of the Trademark Law.

The Order provides that the filing window opens on October 1, 2020, but it does not indicate how long the window will remain open.