Fiji’s current trade mark law is based on British trade mark legislation enacted nearly a century ago and therefore it is well overdue for an overhaul.
Currently, the Act provides for independent registration of trade marks in respect of goods but not services or registration as of rights based on United Kingdom registrations. Goods are classified according to the old British classes rather than the Nice Classification. Further, Fiji is not a member of the Paris Convention and therefore, priority is not available.
The Fijian parliament has proposed a new Trademark Bill 2020 which seeks to:
- Allow multi-class applications
- Set the renewal period to 10 years (currently 14 years)
- Adopt the Nice Classification system, allowing for services to be registered
- Allow registration of certification trade marks
- Allow priority claims under the Paris Convention
- Allow for regulations aimed at ascension to the Madrid Protocol
- Remove any provision for re-registration of UK registration.
Written submissions on the Trademark Bill 2020 are being accepted by the Fijian Standing Committee on Justice, Law and Human Rights up until Saturday 13 February 2021.
Watch this space.