In Brief from our International Office

01 Nov 2000

Equatorial Guinea Joins OAPI
Equatorial Guinea -which up until now has had no legislation for the protection of intellectual property rights- deposited its instrument of adhesion to the Bangui Accord on 23rd September 2000. OAPI membership becomes effective two months after the date of deposit of the instrument of adhesion. This means that from 23 November 2000, all applications filed at OAPI will automatically cover Equatorial Guinea in addition to the existing OAPI member states.

As provided for by the extension Regulation, it will also be possible to extend rights to Equatorial Guinea in respect of OAPI trademark, patent and design registrations which were filed prior to 23 November 2000, and which do not currently cover that territory. There is an 18 month period from the effective date of a new territory's OAPI membership during which extension applications may be filed. So the deadline for extending OAPI rights to Equatorial Guinea is 23 May 2002.

Turkey
Turkey deposited its instrument of accession to the European Patent Convention on August 28, 2000. The EPC enters into force for Turkey on November 1, 2000.*

Singapore
A registered Designs Bill was introduced in the
Singapore parliament on June 30, 2000. It will enable designs to be registered in Singapore for the first time. At present, design protection in Singapore is obtained by registering a design in the UK which is then protected in Singapore by virtue of the UK Designs (Protection) Act. This will be repealed when the new bill becomes law and protection will be obtained by filing an application with the newly created Registry of Designs. Designs currently protected under the UK Designs (Protection) Act will continue to be protected under transitional provisions of the new law.*

*LINKLATERS & ALLIANCE, September 2000



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