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Industrial designs registration in Myanmar

Economic development leads to inevitable competition between businesses. An industrial design once launched on the market can easily be imitated. Therefore, an industrial design registration is necessary and important. However, many businesses not only need to register industrial designs domestically but also internationally, especially in Myanmar. To answer customers’ questions about industrial designs registration in Myanmar, Viet An Law Firm would like to present the following article.

Industrial design

Legal basis

Industrial Design Law (Pyidaungsu Hluttaw Law No. 2, 2019).

What is an industrial design?

Before 2019, Myanmar used a 1945 law that registered industrial designs as a form of invention (design), according to the mechanisms and procedures specified in the same legal document as similar inventions to the US law. While in Vietnam, these two subjects are regulated separately, specifically, patent regulations focus on technical solutions to solve problems while industrial designs create unique and aesthetic shapes for products.

In the 2019 Industrial Design Law, Myanmar has new regulations on industrial designs according to which industrial design is the external appearance of all or part of an industrial or handicraft product created by physical characteristics such as lines, contours, colors, shapes, patterns or materials of the product itself and/or its decorative motifs. The regulations on industrial designs of Myanmar and Vietnam are not much different.

Regulations on industrial designs in Myanmar

Industrial designs in Myanmar are currently protected under the registration mechanism. Registering an industrial design protection application in Myanmar is subject to a Declaration of Ownership and accompanied by a notice in a locally designated magazine or newspaper without having to pay a fee.

Owners who want industrial designs protected in Myanmar must file a Declaration of Ownership at the Registered Office in Yangon, Myanmar. The Declaration of Ownership will be confirmed by the Myanmar Registration Office. In the event of a dispute or infringement, this statement is considered valuable evidence.

Conditions for industrial designs registration in Myanmar

To be eligible for registration, an industrial design must meet the following conditions to be new and independently created.

Newness requirement: An industrial design is considered new if it has not previously been recorded in writing, used, published, displayed, or disclosed to the public in any other form in the Republic of the Union of Myanmar or internationally before the application date or priority date if required in the application.

An industrial design is considered old if the design is not significantly different from a known design or combines known design features.

Applicants can claim priority if they file their application within six (06) months of the filing date in a member state of the Paris Convention or another member state of the World Trade Organization.

 Industrial designs falling into one of the following cases will not be protected:

  • A design determined primarily by technical or functional considerations;
  • Contrary to public order, morality, beliefs or the precious culture of the state.

Registration authority in Myanmar

Businesses and individuals can register industrial designs by filing applications directly at the Intellectual Property Department (IPD) under the Ministry of Commerce of Myanmar.

According to the Myanmar Industrial Design Law 2019, IPD has the following functions:

  • Announcing the content of industrial design registration;
  • Maintain industrial design registration;
  • Supervise the activities of the boards established in the respective field of intellectual property;
  • Carry out functions and tasks related to industrial designs assigned by the agency in each period.

Industrial design registration documents in Myanmar

Myanmar follows the latest Locarno Classification established under the 1968 Locarno Agreement. According to chapter X of the Myanmar Industrial Design Law 2019, industrial design registration applications can be in Myanmar or English and must meet the following conditions:

Required information:

  • Registration required;
  • Name and address of the applicant or legal entity;
  • Name, identity card number and address of the representative where the representative submits the application;
  • Full, clear presentation of the industrial design;
  • Indication of the product to which the industrial design is applied or expressed.

Attached documents

  • Place of application for the legal entity, registration number, type and country name of the legal entity;
  • In case the applicant wants to take advantage of the priority of an earlier application, a statement claiming priority of the earlier application, together with instructions and evidence supporting the claim of priority;
  • In case the applicant wishes to avail himself of any right of priority arising from the display of the industrial design in an exhibition, a declaration to that effect together with indications and evidence supporting the claim of priority that exhibition;
  • Any other factors prescribed by the Agency or Ministry from time to time.

Currently, Myanmar is not a member of the Hague system, so applicants cannot designate industrial design registration through the international route at this time. However, the amendment to the law in 2019 serves as a steppingstone for the country to join the Hague Agreement on industrial design registration. At that time, Vietnamese applicants can more easily register international industrial designs.

Procedures for industrial designs registration in Myanmar

Step 1: Submit an application for industrial design registration

Individuals and legal entities can apply for registration of industrial designs with the Myanmar Intellectual Property Department online, directly (including through local representatives) or by postal services. Applicants who do not reside in Myanmar must submit through a local representative via the required form, which must be notarized by a notary of the country where the applicant resides.

The Ministry of Commerce of Myanmar has published the Industrial Design Rules (IDR) under Notification 67/2023 dated September 29, 2023, setting out the rules for filing applications, describing industrial designs, examining and amending applications., withdrawing applications, protesting, registering, recording transfer and license, invalidating and appointing representative to file industrial design documents.

Step 2: Submit and confirm

Once the Department receives a complete application that meets the regulations and includes the required fee, the application will be confirmed.

Reasons for industrial designs registration in Myanmar

  • Create data sources for third-party research (customers, partners), thereby facilitating the search for investment sources;
  • Serve as a basis for evidence in case of disputes related to rights to industrial designs;
  • Notify the public of ownership rights and warn of infringement. When businesses, individuals, or organizations register an industrial design, it will help the industrial designs to be protected and protected by law. Accordingly, plagiarism and idea theft are limited.

Industrial designs registration in Myanmar through Industrial Property Representative – Viet An Law Firm

  • Representing the client to conduct application procedures, and monitor and respond to the industrial design registration process.
  • Consulting on increasing the ability to register industrial designs.
  • Representing customers to draft registration documents as required.
  • Consulting on minimizing risks related to the industrial design registration process in Myanmar.

  Clients who need any questions on industrial design registration in Myanmar, please contact Viet An Law Firm for the best support.

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