Botswana is a stable democracy with an excellent track record of governance and has topped the list of the world’s fastest growing economies since attaining independence in 1966. There is a well-developed legal system based on common law and purpose written legislation which facilitates commercial activities.
Intellectual Property law is advanced in Botswana and brand owners’ rights are enforced effectively.
Botswana acceded to the Madrid Protocol in 2006. The Industrial Property Act No.8 of 2010 (“the IP Act”) that came into force on 1 September 2012, has been enacted to provide protection for trade marks designated under the International Registration (“IR”) system. The IP Act makes provision for the protection of industrial property in Botswana, giving effect to various international conventions, treaties and protocols to which Botswana is a signatory.
With a single application in one currency and one language at their national trade marks office, Botswana trade mark owners may now secure trade mark protection in other Madrid Protocol member countries. Foreign trade mark owners will also be able to designate Botswana when lodging International trade mark applications under the Madrid Protocol (“ITMR’s”).
We briefly set out below, information and comments pertaining to the procedures to be followed when lodging an application for ITMR’s or designating Botswana in terms of the IP Act.
Recordal of International (Madrid) Trade Mark Registrations (ITMRs) in national Trade Mark Office
We would like to express our appreciation to Mr Timothy Leatile Moalusi, Chief Commercial Officer (IP) Registrar of Companies and Intellectual Property of Botswana for his kind co-operation in assisting us to in the preparation of this commentary.