Pakistan has officially joined the Madrid System in a significant development to secure Pakistani trademarks in 124 member countries, making it simpler and more competitive for brand owners to protect themselves in the export markets.
Following accession to the Madrid Protocol, Pakistan’s trademark holders will be able to secure their trademarks in the Member States by applying to the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) a single application facilitating the ease of doing business.
Pakistan deposited its instrument of accession to the Madrid Protocol with the Director-General of WIPO on 24 Feb, making it the 108th member of the Madrid Structure, according to an official announcement by WIPO.
Ambassador Khalil-ur-Rehman Hashmi, Permanent Representative of Pakistan to the United Nations, deposited the Instrument of Accession to the Madrid Protocol with WIPO Director-General Daren Tang in Geneva.
Effective 24 May, local brand owners in Pakistan may, by filing a single foreign application and paying a single collection of fees, begin using the Madrid System to secure their trademarks in the 123 territories of the system’s other 107 members.
Mr Tang said in a video message on the sidelines of the deposition of the accession instrument that Pakistan-based brands such as spice giant Shan Food or fashion house Khaadi will find it easier and cheaper to obtain security in export markets with their distinct hand-woven kurtas.
Mr Daren said the easy registration systems of the Madrid system would also help SMES and entrepreneurs in Pakistan, as well as individuals such as cricket stars or other Pakistani celebrities whose personal brand is recognised all over the world.
The Madrid System will make it easier for them to enter and scale into Pakistan for those interested in taking their brands into a massive Pakistan market of over 200 million, as it has for other members of the Madrid family. With its accession to Madrid, Pakistan has taken a significant step in promoting and further enhancing its IP ecosystem for its brand owners, entrepreneurs and companies, DG WIPO said.
With its clear designation procedure, when selling their goods and services in Pakistan, foreign companies and trademark owners may, from 24 May, request trademark protection through the Madrid Scheme.
The accession of Pakistan highlights the advent of the Madrid Framework as a key component of global mark security, offering brand owners worldwide and in the South Asian area a simple and cost-effective solution.
The official announcement released by the Intellectual Property Organization (IPO-Pakistan) claimed that by using the Madrid road, the business community of other countries will also be able to gain protection for their trademarks in Pakistan.
Ambassador Hashmi said that in many industries, Pakistan has several foreign brands, whether fashion, hospitality management food, etc., etc. This accession to the Madrid Protocol, thus, gives them the ability to extend their outreach worldwide. He said that it would also allow them to protect their names, but also to grow their companies.
I also see it as a win-win proposal because Asia is a fast-growing area in which the economy of Pakistan is also growing,” he said, adding that it gives foreign brands, foreign trademark holders, the opportunity to come to Pakistan to invest and take advantage of the opportunities that exist.”