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For most brand owners, the idea of ​​securing their TM rights in the Pacific island states would be innovative. This is due to the region's ignorance of certain prejudices regarding IP enforcement in this little explored part of the world. In this article, we will analyze why registering IP in the Asia-Pacific region is beneficial and whether it is worth worrying about infringement of your rights as an IP owner.

IP Registration in the Pacific Islands

The Oceania Islands are spread over an area of ​​more than 800,000 sq. km and are grouped into three clusters based on geographic location and not least on racial and cultural differences.

The legal systems of most island states continue to be heavily influenced by their colonial history. While most of them have their own IP registration systems, some states are not regulated at all.

Pacific Island States with IP Registration Systems

The following table provides a summary of what to consider when filing applications for TMs in the Pacific Island States where the regulatory framework is in place.

Pacific Island State

IP Registration 

Fiji

Fiji TM registration is based on existing UK TM registration. 



 

The Republic of Kiribati

It should be borne in mind that Fiji is not a party to the Paris Convention.

Registration of TM in the Republic of Kiribati is allowed, which is based on the existing registration of TM in the UK but:

a well-known brand is not subject to registration.

Kiribati is a small state with a very high degree of economic vulnerability (according to the UN).

The state is not a party to the Paris Convention.

The Solomon Islands

Registration of TM in the Solomon Islands and Tuvalu is allowed, which is based on the existing registration of TM in the UK, but:

·         a well-known brand is not subject to registration. 

Multiple Nice Grades can be applied for.

It should be borne in mind that the Solomon Islands and Tuvalu are not signatories to the Paris Convention.

Tuvalu

Papua New Guinea

It is possible to apply for the 1st class according to the Nice classification.

 

It should be borne in mind that this island state is not a party to the Paris Convention.

 

Samoa

You can apply for registration of TM in Vanuatu and other islands for several classes according to the Nice classification.

The state of Tonga is located on 177 islands of the archipelago of the same name.

It should be borne in mind that these island states are not parties to the Paris Convention.

Tonga

Vanuatu 
 

Several island states in Oceania lack brand registration systems. Maldives, Palau, East Timor are among them.

However, owners can rely on some degree of protection for their brands through local media coverage. Through it, the general public is informed about the ownership of the TM and the consequences of using this TM without the consent of the owner.

Although the island states of Oceania are only on the path of development economically and are remote from the main world markets due to their geographic location, these factors should not be an obstacle for brand owners to register TM in the Asia-Pacific region. On the contrary, given its high population growth, coupled with an abundance of cultural diversity and natural resources, the Pacific islands do provide great commercial opportunities for brand expansion and advertising.

Professional assistance

TM rights in the Pacific Island States must be considered on a country-by-country basis. All these countries are highly interested in a reliable and functional rule-based system. Nevertheless, as it was shown in the examples of different states, some of them are more advanced and have rules for registering TMs, some lack a developed system for registering IP rights, and some have no rules at all. 

Planning to register a TM in the Asia-Pacific region? 

IQ Decision UK specialists are ready to provide comprehensive assistance in IP registration in the Pacific island states.