Trademark News

Philippine Intellectual Property Office adopts EU trademark database


The online trademark application tool of the Philippine Intellectual Property Office (IPOPHL) now uses the European Union (EU) Goods and Services Coordination Database (HDB), which is currently the world's largest multilingual trademark classification database.

HDB contains more than 78,000 terms, from which users can choose when indicating the nature of the goods and services seeking trademarks. All clauses in the HDB will be automatically approved by all trademark offices in the European Union.  Describing the goods and services related to the trademark is a key step in the application. This will set restrictions on the trademark protection sought and help the Intellectual Property Office determine whether a trademark has a confusing similarity with another trademark of the same category. This conflict is the reason for rejection. The database also integrates the latest version of the Nice classification-the International Trademark Classification System, which makes IPOPHL's system more coordinated with global trademark application standards.

“Adopting the EU's HDB can ensure that trademark applications filed by local companies in Intellectual property (IP) offices across the EU and foreign applicants filed with IPOPHL can apply for trademarks smoothly and more successfully”" Rowel S., Director General of IPOPHL, Barba said. He explained: “This will eliminate the risk of being rejected due to classification or description errors, in which case it will mean paying for a new application and waiting for a longer decision. "He added that since more terminology options are provided to filers, companies can view a more complete list of categories when conducting due diligence.  “This will enable them to find product or service marks that may conflict with them, and in this way evaluate their chances of obtaining approval before proceeding with the application. "The person in charge of IPOPHL said that people who own registered trademarks can also benefit from the database expansion because it helps them monitor whether their trademarks have been infringed and predict the risk of being cancelled in the future.

“For EU companies, this greater coordination between IPOPHL and the EU Intellectual Property Office can simplify trademark protection and may motivate them to open more stores in the Philippines or introduce more brands to the Philippines through exports. "IPOPHL is the 17th intellectual property office outside the European Union and the 85th national and regional intellectual property office in the world to use HDB.  As an achievement of the IPOPHL Trademark and Management Information Service, database integration is part of the deliverables of IPOPHL and the EU Intellectual Property Office under the ARISE Plus Intellectual Property (ARISE+IPR) program.  ARISE+IPR is a five-year 5.5 million euro program funded by the European Union to support the ASEAN Intellectual Property Action Plan 2016-2025, which aims to improve the creation, protection, utilization, management and enforcement of intellectual property rights in ASEAN member states.

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