The Department of Intellectual Property (DoIP), Ministry of Economic Affairs in collaboration with the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) is conducting training on Trademark Examination and Registration System in Thimphu from October 22 to 26, 2018. Dasho Phuntsho Norbu, the Officiating Secretary, Ministry of Economic Affairs graced the inaugural session and provided advice on the importance and need for the DoIP officials and trademark examiners in particular, to make use of such capacity building programs.
The Trademark Registry of the DoIP receives the large number of applications for registration of marks from both local and foreign businesses. As on date, the office has received more than 17,700 applications. Consequently, the Trademark Registry has also generated more than Nu. 100 m revenue through the collection of registration related fees including CHF 1.67 m, as of June 2018.
One of the constraints that the Trademark Registry has been confronting is the requirement for adequate in-house expertise to conduct quality examination of Trademark applications. Trademark registration is a long process, involving both technical and legal aspects of intellectual property. It takes up to seven months to complete the entire registration process of the Trademark applications. One of the challenging tasks involved is undertaking the Search and Examination of the Marks and various grounds for trademark registration and refusal are enshrined in the Industrial Property Act of the kingdom of Bhutan, 2001.
Following USPTO officials are imparting the focused training in this field to enhance the skills of the IP officials on request of DoIP, MoEA:
- Shilpi Jha, Sr. IP Counsel, USPTO, New Delhi, India;
- Nancy Omelko, Attorney Advisor, USPTO, Virginia, USA;
- Ms Attiya Malik, Attorney Advisor, USPTO, Virginia, USA;
The team is in the country after conducting a similar capacity building program for the officials of the Intellectual Property Office in Sri Lanka.