11 August 2020TrademarksMuireann Bolger

Laos and Uganda join TMclass

The IP department at the  Ministry of Science and Technology of Laos and the Uganda Registration Services Bureau ( URSB) have joined TMclass.

TMclass is an international IP tool for classifying and registering goods and services, which is managed by the European Union Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO) and national IP offices, collectively known as the  European Union Intellectual Property Network.

Laos joined yesterday, August 10, while the URSB joined on August 3 and will also be a member of  Design Class, which helps brand owners search and translate product indications needed to apply for design protection.

TMclass enables a user to search for and classify the terms for goods and services needed to apply for trademark protection. It also offers translation in 44 languages along with a verification service, while DesignClass facilitates the search and translation of product descriptions in 28 languages.

These latest additions bring the total number of national and regional IP offices, including the:  African Regional Intellectual Property Organization,  Organisation Africaine de la Propriété Intellectuelle,  World Intellectual Property Office and EUIPO, in the tool to 82. The URSB’s participation brings the total number of IP offices using DesignClass to 37.

The integration of Laos in TMclass is a result of the  ARISE Plus Intellectual Property Rights, a programme that supports regional integration through IP cooperation, and which is funded by the European Union and implemented by the EUIPO.

Both IP offices will now use and accept the list of terms from the harmonised database of goods and services in TMclass, and Uganda will use the list of terms from the harmonised database of product indications (HDBPI) in DesignClass.

There are now 11 non-EU IP offices in TMclass and 10 in DesignClass which use and accept terms from these harmonised databases. The EUIPO has said that the adoption of HDB and HDBPI by URSB results from a EU funded project called  Intellectual Property Rights (IPRs) Action for Africa (AfrIPI), which is directed by the European Commission and executed by the EUIPO.

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More on this story

28 July 2020   The National Industrial Property Office of the Dominican Republic (ONAPI) and the IP Office of Saint Kitts and Nevis (IPOSKN) have joined TMclass,
4 July 2019   Brazil has announced two measures aimed at reducing the bureaucracy, costs and duration of trademark and patent processes.
8 September 2020   AfrIPI—the first-ever African cooperation project focusing on IP rights—has discussed and approved its overall plan and future activities, which includes its support of the registration of geographical indications in Africa and the EU.