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Mrz 16, 2016 (Newsletter Issue 5/16)
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Trademark Opposition Hearings No Longer Available in Botswana

On January 26, 2016, the Companies and Intellectual Property Authority (CIPA) announced that it no longer has the capability to conduct hearings for trademark oppositions and invalidations. The reason given was that due to recent restructuring, CIPA had lost staff members essential to the operation of these hearings.

No time period has been given as to when CIPA will regain the capability to conduct such hearings. However, assurances have been made that an interim solution is currently being investigated. For the time being, CIPA will receive and acknowledge the trademark oppositions and invalidations lodged with their office.

As a long-term solution, CIPA intends to review the Industrial Property Act of 2010 with a view to incorporating provisions for a Trademarks Tribunal, not unlike that of its neighbor, South Africa. Substantial delays can be expected.

Source: INTA Bulletin, March 1, 2016, Vol. 71, No. 4
Spoor & Fisher, South Africa as contributor and Remgro Management Services Ltd, South Africa as verifier