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MATSO Intellectual Property Services
Saudi Arabia, Saudi Arabia (SA)
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Saudi Arabia (SA)

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Latest News: 04-12-2017 (Newsletter Issue 7/17)
Administrative and Reduced Opposition Procedure Now
Saudi Arabia has updated its opposition procedure from a legal to a purely administrative proceeding with the adoption of the Gulf Cooperation Council Trademark Law in the country. The oppositions are now filed with the Trademark Office instead of the Board of Grievances (first instance court) which used to be the case.

Further, the opposition period has been reduced from 90 to 60 days accordingly from the last publication date in the Official Gazette, not extendable.

Source: JAH & Co. IP, Qatar


02-22-2017 (Newsletter Issue 4/17)
Publication Fees for Trademark Recordals Increased
The Saudi Trademark Office issued an official circular, announcing an increase in the official publication fees for the following trademark recordal actions:

- Recordal of assignment or merger from SAR 500 to SAR 1,500
- Recordal of change of name and/or address from SAR 500 to SAR 1,500
- Recordal of license agreement or cancellation of the same from SAR 1,000 to SAR 2,000
- Recordal of mortgage agreement of a trademark or cancellation of the same from SAR 1,000 to SAR 3,000
- Amendment of goods and services by removing or restricting the list of goods and services from SAR 1,000 to SAR 1,500
- Amendment of the form of the mark for trademark registration from SAR 500 to SAR 1,500
- Cancellation of a trademark registration by owner SAR 3,000
- Change of name and address of agent for service from SAR 500 to SAR 1,500

The above increase in the official publication fees will come into force from February 19, 2017 and will be applied retroactively for recordals already filed with the Trademark Office.

Source: JAH & Co. IP, Qatar


10-12-2016 (Newsletter Issue 18/16)
Trademark Registration Fees Increased
The Saudi Trademark Office has officially increased the fees of trademark registration. The GCC TM Law and its Implementing Regulations had been published at the Official Gazette in Saudi Arabia (Um Al- Qura), issue No. 4625, on July 1st, 2016; pursuant to the Saudi Royal Degree No. M/51 dated April 26, 2014.

The new official fees as per below are applicable as of October 2, 2016:
Filing Fees USD 270/SAR 1,000
Publication Fees USD 800/SAR 3,000
Registration Fees USD 1,335/SAR 5,000

The official fees for filing and publication have remained unchanged whereas the registration fees have been increased from USD 800 to USD 1,335 USD.

It remains to be seen whether the fees increase will retroactively apply to the pending applications or if there are going to be changes concerning renewals, recordals. So far there has been no official notification in this regard yet.

Source: JAH & Co. IP, Qatar


09-13-2016 (Newsletter Issue 16/16)
Major Procedural and Fee Changes Expected
There are major procedural and fee changes in Saudi Arabia expected. The GCC TM Law and its Implementing Regulations had been published in the Official Gazette in Saudi Arabia (Um Al- Qura), issue No. 4625, on July 1, 2016. Pursuant to the Saudi Royal Degree No. M/51 dated April 26, 2014, the GCC TM Law shall come into force in Saudi Arabia within 90 days from the publication of the Implementing Regulations of the GCC TM Law (September 27, 2016).

Following is the verbal information provided by the Saudi Trademark Office:
1. Possible hike in official trademark registration fees from USD 1,870 to USD 2,400.
2. The opposition period will be shortened from the current 90 days to 60 days for all new applications filed on or after the implementation of Law.
3. The oppositions are to be filed with the Higher Committee of the Trademark Office, swapping the current practice of filing opposition with the court.
4. There would be official fees for appeals to Minister & Oppositions.
5. Similar to the implementation of GCC Trademarks Law in other gulf states it is expected that the increased fees would be applied retroactively for pending applications in terms of publication and registration.

Source: JAH & Co. IP, Qatar


04-05-2016 (Newsletter Issue 6/16)
Official Renewal Publication Fee Increased
As form March 24, 2016, new official publication fees for renewal of trademark registration has been implemented. The Saudi Trademark Office has raised the official publication fees from SAR 300 to SAR 3,000 for each class. The total official fees for trademark renewal per class are 6,000 SAR or 1,600 USD.

Further, the renewal of trademarks will be filed and completed online.

Source: JAH & Co. IP, Qatar


09-29-2015 (Newsletter Issue 15/15)
Increase of Official Fees Expected
It is expected that the official fees for the publication of renewals and recordal of assignments in Saudi Arabia will be increased from 15 October 2015.

Please be advised that the old fees of said publication of assignments were SAR 500 and for renewals SAR 300. The new fees is expected to be SAR 3000 for both.

Source: JAH & Co. IP, Qatar


06-10-2014 (Newsletter Issue 9/14)
Deadline for Submitting PoA Changed
The Saudi Trademark Section of the Ministry of Commerce and Industry announced that the new deadline for submitting a PoA will be 90 days from the date notification is received from the office. Previously, the PoA had to be submitted within 30 days of the filing date. This change comes as a result of the introduction of an electronic filing system.

Source: INTA Bulletin, Vol 69, No. 10 of June 1, 2014; Saba & Co. IP, Head Office, Lebanon and Salem Law Firm, Jordan


03-18-2014 (Newsletter Issue 5/14)
New Scale for Filing and Registration Numbers
The Saudi Trademark Office has started to adopt one number for the trademark which will be used as filing and registration number at the same time. This number is the electronic reference of the mark which starts with the Lunar year, for instance: 143500541. The system will restart the counting at the beginning of every Lunar year.

Source: JAH & Co. IP, Qatar


02-04-2014 (Newsletter Issue 2/14)
E-Publication Fees Increased
On 14 January 2014, the Saudi Trademark Office (STO) has announced that the official e-publication fees for all new trademark applications has been increased with immediate effect.

The e-publication fees of new trademarks are SAR 1,500 (EUR 290) for local companies and SAR 3,000 (EUR 590) for foreign companies.

Source: JAH & Co. IP, Qatar


12-17-2013 (Newsletter Issue 18/13)
E-Filing Practice
The new Saudi electronic system adopts basically the Nice Classification of Goods and Services and accordingly the main items in the respective class heading should merely be included and not all the goods falling in the relevant list of goods of the Nice Classification or the goods or services requested by the applicant.

In this perspective it should be noted that Saudi Arabia does not adopt a subclass system which means that registration of a trademark in a certain class of goods or services provides a legal protection for any items in that class though it is not clearly indicated in same. Also, the Saudi Trademarks Registrar will not allow the registration of a similar or identical trademark for different goods or services in the same class.

According to a recent arrangement introduced by the Saudi Trademark Office, trademark applications will be accepted on formal grounds only if they comply with the above.

Given that trademark applications can only be submitted electronically, all applications with an item that is not in line with the above will not be properly docketed into the system, which will basically result in considerable delays.

Source: JAH & Co. IP, Qatar


10-01-2013 (Newsletter Issue 14/13)
Electronic Filing Now Possible
The Saudi Trademark Office announced that it has started receiving electronic filing of new trademark applications.

According to the Office, all attorneys and agents can file their trademark applications through the new system in Saudi Arabia which will be under testing for a limited period of time.

The new filing system requires uploading the legalized Power of Attorney to be submitted in original copy.

The new filing system will capsulize the trademark registration process which may be complex and requires the necessity to meet many requirements within strict time deadlines.

Source: JAH & Co. IP, Qatar


07-02-2013 (Newsletter Issue 10/13)
Official Weekend Changed
Pursuant to the Royal Decree issued by King Abdullah Bin Abdulaziz No. A/185 dated 14 Sha’aban 14340 H corresponding to 23 June 2013, the official weekend in Saudi Arabia has changed from Thursday - Friday to Friday – Saturday starting 29 June 2013, to align its banking and business days with most of the region and to better serve its economy and international commitments.

Source: JAH & Co. IP, Doha, Qatar


01-18-2013 (Newsletter Issue 1/13)
Accession to Nice Agreement
The Tenth Edition of the International Classification of Goods and Services for the Purposes of the Registration of Marks under the Nice Agreement (Nice Classification) has been officially adopted in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, according to the Trademark Office at the Ministry of Commerce and Trade.

The Trademark Office is now ready to receive trademark applications for goods and services under the same edition of the classification.

The Nice Classification is a system of classifying goods and services for the purpose of registering trademarks. The system groups products into 45 classes and allows users seeking to trademark a good or service to choose from these classes as appropriate.

Source: JAH & Co. IP, Doha, Qatar


12-04-2012 (Newsletter Issue 18/12)
Amendments to Trademark Law
The Ministerial Decision No. 1147 dated October 16, 2012 of the Saudi Ministry of Commerce and Industry became effective as of the date of its publication.

The main amendments are listed as follows:
- Renewal applications are only examined to ensure a legalized power of attorney in the name of the agent renewing the mark and the original registration certificate of the mark are enclosed with the renewal application.

- The Trademark Office will publish a notification that indicates the trademark’s assignment and includes: trademark’s description; number and date of trademark registration; name of previous trademark owner; name of new trademark owner, his nationality and address

- The Trademark Office will publish notices on trademarks cancelled on the website of the Ministry of Commerce and Industry. Before such publication was made in the Official Gazette "Umm Al Qura".

Source: JAH & Co. IP, Doha, Qatar


11-19-2012 (Newsletter Issue 17/12)
Publication in Official Gazette No Longer Requested
The publication in the Official Gazette (Um Al Qura) is no longer requested in Saudi Arabia.
By pursuant of the Ministerial Decree No. 1147 dated 16 October 2012 the Ministry of Commerce and Industry (MOCI) provides for publication of different request and applications concerning trademark in the Ministry of Commerce website instead of the Official Gazette "Umm Al Qura".

The Decree amended several Articles in the Implementing Regulations of Trademark Law including the provisions organize publication of accepted applications, renewal applications; assignment applications; license applications, cancellation requests of mortgage and license and Administrative and Court cancellation decisions of trademark registrations.

The decision allows publication of the above requests in the website of ministry of commerce and industry (MOCI) or any other place determined by MOCI.

The decision became effective upon on its publication in the Official Gazette.

Source: SMAS IP, Saudi Arabia


03-27-2012 (Newsletter Issue 5/12)
Trademark Office Online Services
The Trademark Office of Saudi Arabia has recently launched an online service through the Ministry of Commerce official website www.mci.gov.sa

Interested parties can easily check the status of Saudi trademark applications by simply inserting the filing number in the designated field.

Source: SMAS IP, Saudi Arabia


11-08-2011 (Newsletter Issue 13/11)
Validity of the PoA Amended
The Saudi Arabian Trademark Directorate has issued a new directive declaring that as of November 27, 2011, the validity of the Power of Attorney is ten Hegira years which is equivalent to nine year and eight months according to the Gregorian Calendar and is calculated as from the date of the stamp of the Saudi Arabian Embassy abroad on the power of attorney.

The validity of the trademark registration in Saudi Arabia is ten Hegira years (equivalent to approximately nine years and eight months according to the Gregorian calendar) as from the filing date. As the renewal fees of a trademark registration can be paid during the last 12 Hegira months of the current protection period it will be possible to use the same power of attorney used for filing the application if the renewal instructions are received at the beginning if the lat year protection period to avoid executing a fresh power of attorney for renewal and unnecessary disbursements.

Source: JAH & Co. IP , Doha, Qatar


10-25-2011 (Newsletter Issue 12/11)
Legalization of Power of Attorney Required
The Saudi Trademarks Directorate announced that all new trademark applications should be accompanied with a copy of a legalized power of attorney provided that the original of same should also be submitted at a later stage after filing for verification, effective 27 November 2011. No new trademark applications will be accepted for filing without a legalized power of attorney as per the current practice. Also, the validity of the legalized powers of attorney will be ten years only.

Source: JAH & Co. IP , Doha, Qatar


Legal basis is the GCC Trademark Law adopted by Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, effective from September 27, 2016.
Saudi Arabia is a member of Paris Convention.
Trademark protection is obtained by registration. It can also be acquired by sufficient public recognition.
Nice classification, 10th edition
Exceptions: No trademark protection can be achieved covering alcoholic goods in class 33 and alcoholic beer in class 32, Christmas trees and related articles (class 28), pork meat (class 29), as well as related retail services in class 35.
Art. 2 of the GCC Law determines the following: As a trademarks shall be considered anything having a distinctive form such as names, words, signatures, letters, figures, drawings, logos, titles, hallmarks, seals, pictures, engravings, packs or any other mark or group of marks if used or intended to be used either to distinguish goods, products or services of a facility or other facilities or to indicate the rendering of a service or the control of inspection of goods or services. The voice or odor shall be considered as part of the trademark.
The following trademark types are registrable: trademarks, service marks, collective marks and certification marks.
The trademark application is filed at the Trademark Office electronically through a portal on their website. A separate application has to be filed for each class and a separate sum of official fees is to be paid for each class.
Foreign applicants need a local agent.
It is permitted under the practice of the Saudi Trademark Registrar to file trademark applications and obtain a filing number and date as well as the official filing certificate with uploading a simple copy of the legalized power of attorney on the website of the trademark office the original of which can be submitted at a later stage after filing for verification with no limit and at no additional cost. A power of attorney must also be dated. Any power of attorney without an express date of execution is void.
However, Chinese applicants need to provide a special power of attorney legalized at the Saudi Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
The validity of the legalized powers of attorney will be ten Hegira years (equivalent to approximately nine years and eight months according to the Gregorian calendar) and is calculated as from the date of the stamp of the Saudi Arabian Embassy abroad on the power of attorney.
Foreign applicants do not need a domestic registration.
The application process includes a formal, absolute and relative grounds which includes an examination of distinctiveness and a search for prior trademarks. Signs not deemed distinctive in the examination can be registered if distinctiveness has been acquired by use.
The processing time from first filing to registration is approx. 3-5 months.
The first office action is taken after approx. one week.
The trademark application is published on the website of Ministry of Commerce and Industry (MOCI) at the following link: http://eservices.mci.gov.sa/Eservices/Commerce/Trademarks.aspx
Trademark registration certificates are issued electronically in lieu of paper format without hard copies.
National:
The opposition period is 60 days from publication date of the application in the Official Gazette, non-extendable.
A trademark registration is valid for 10 years according to the Hegira (Islamic) calendar (approximately 9 years and 8 months according to the Gregorian calendar) as from the filing date. The registration is renewable for periods of 10 Hegira years (9 years and 8 months). The registration is renewable for equal periods.
According to the provisions of the new Trademark Law, the grace period is 6 Hegira months.

Further practical details are available in our publication on this topic here
Use of a trademark is not required for registration or renewal of a mark. However, a trademark is vulnerable to cancellation by any interested party if there has been no effective use of the mark for a period of 5 consecutive years preceding the date of filing for cancellation.

Further practical details are available in our publication on this topic here
The official fee for filing a trademark application is SAR 1,000. The e-publication fee is SAR 3,000 for foreign companies and SAR 1,500 for local companies. The registration fee is SAR 5,000.

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Practical details on licensing procedures, requirements and effectiveness are available in our publication on this topic here.
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Country Index is a free service of SMD Group. We thank the following law firms for their assistance in updating the information provided.

Country Survey
04-29-2017
JAH & CO. IP, Doha, Qatar  

02-28-2017
JAH & CO. IP, Doha, Qatar  

09-21-2015
JAH & CO. IP, Doha, Qatar  

08-23-2014
JAH & CO. IP, Doha, Qatar  

06-08-2013
JAH & CO. IP, Doha, Qatar  

04-27-2013
Abu-Ghazaleh Intellectual Property, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia

11-14-2011
JAH & CO. IP, Doha, Qatar  



MATSO Intellectual Property Services

Riyadh
11435 Saudi Arabia
Saudi Arabia (SA)

Ministry of Commerce and Industry, Trade Mark Section (MOCI)
Riyadh 11162
Saudi Arabia
Tel +966 920 000 667
Mail info@mci.gov.sa
www.mci.gov.sa