ARIPO Patent Registrations

ARIPO is the African Regional Industrial Property Organisation for English-speaking Africa. The member countries are Botswana, Gambia, Ghana, Kenya, Lesotho, Liberia (from 24 March 2010), Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, Rwanda (from 24 September 2011), Sierra Leone, Sudan, Swaziland, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia, and Zimbabwe. Please note that protection can alternatively be obtained on an individual basis in any of these countries through a national application in such country.

ARIPO is a member of the International Convention and of the PCT. The deadline for PCT Regional Phase Entry is 31 months from the priority date. The requirements for filing a non-PCT application in ARIPO are as follows:

  • ARIPO Power of Attorney (signed) – can be late filed within two months;
  • Specification, claims, drawings, and abstract in English – required on the day of filing;
  • ARIPO Assignment of Invention- can be late filed, no set deadline; and
  • Priority document with verified English translation – can be late filed, within 3 and 6 months, respectively. The requirements for filing a PCT application in ARIPO are as follows:
  • Power of Attorney (simply signed) – can be late filed within two months;
  • Specification, claims, drawings, and abstract in English – required on the day of filing;
  • Assignment of Invention – can be late filed, no set deadline;
  • Copy of PCT International advertisement – required on day of filing;
  • Copy of International Search Report – can be late filed, no set deadline; and
  • Copy of International Preliminary Examination Report – can be late filed, no set deadline.

It is possible to designate the ARIPO member states to which the application applies. In other words, an applicant can decide which states to designate. Furthermore, please note that for PCT applications the first renewal fee may be due upon filing (due retrospectively on the first anniversary of the international filing date, where applicable).  If the PCT application claims no priority, the second renewal fee may also be due upon filing (due retrospectively on the second anniversary of the international filing date, where applicable).

ARIPO Trademark Registrations

Member
Botswana, Gambia, Ghana, Kenya, Lesotho, Liberia, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, Sierra Leone, Sudan, Swaziland, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia and Zimbabwe. National trade marks may be covered in each country.

Please note that although there are 16 contracting states of ARIPO, only Botswana, Lesotho, Liberia, Malawi, Namibia, Swaziland, Tanzania, Uganda and Zimbabwe have amended their national legislation to recognise rights arising from an ARIPO registration.

Filing requirements

  • Full name, street address and description of the applicant (including trading style, if any, and state/country of incorporation, if incorporated);
  • List of goods and/or services;
  • A signed power of attorney;
  • Twelve prints for a device mark – not exceeding 9 cm x 9 cm;
  • If Convention priority is claimed, a certified true copy of priority documents, together with a verified English translation if appropriate.

Classification

The 45 classes of the International classification of goods and services are followed for Botswana, Lesotho, Namibia, Tanzania and Zimbabwe. The 34 classes of the International classification of goods are followed for Malawi and Uganda. Paris Convention priority may be claimed when application is filed.

General

Duration of the trade mark is 10 years from date of application and renewable for further periods of 10 years. The use of trade mark is determined on a purely national basis. In most contracting countries, within five years of registration and thereafter, non-use for a continuous period of five years or longer may render a registration vulnerable to removal by an aggrieved party. Agreement for licenses and assignments are permitted.

  • Please also note that Malawi and Uganda do not have service marks.