Registration of Collective Trademarks in Ethiopia

The concept of collective trademarks in Ethiopia is a crucial aspect of the country’s intellectual property rights laws. The provisions of the Proclamation concerning the registration of trademarks also apply to the registration of collective trademarks. A collective trademark is a type of trademark that is owned and used by a group of individuals, trade unions, trade union federations, or associations. The purpose of registering a collective trademark is to protect the rights of its members.

An application for the registration of a collective trademark must designate the trademark as a collective trademark and be accompanied by a copy of the statutes governing the use of the trademark. The statutes must specify the name, headquarters, objectives, and representatives of the association. They must also indicate the group of persons entitled to use the trademark, the conditions for use, and the rights and obligations of the parties concerned in the event of trademark infringement. The owner of the registered collective trademark must also notify the Office of any changes made in respect of the statutes submitted.

Trade unions, trade union federations, or associations are eligible to apply for the registration of collective trademarks in order to protect the rights of their members. However, the registration of a collective trademark can be cancelled if the registered owner is dissolved, no longer satisfies the requirements of the Proclamation, has used the trademark in conditions other than those prescribed in the statutes, or if the statutes contain provisions contrary to public order or morality. In the event of cancellation, the trademark may not be appropriated in respect of the same goods or services by a new registration or used in any other way until a period of seven years has lapsed.

The statute governing the use of a registered collective trademark must be open to public inspection. Any amendment to the statute must be filed with the Office and registered before it can take effect. The Office may also cause its publication where necessary, with a view to inviting opposition and observations.

Collective trademarks in Ethiopia provide protection to trade unions, trade union federations, or associations in securing the rights of their members. To register a collective trademark, an application must be submitted designating the trademark as collective, along with a copy of the statutes governing its use. The provisions for trademark registration in Ethiopia apply to collective trademarks as well.

The statutes submitted with the application must specify the name, headquarters, objectives, and representatives of the association, as well as the group of individuals entitled to use the trademark, conditions of use, and rights and obligations in the event of infringement. The owner of the registered collective trademark is required to notify the Office of any changes made to the statutes.

In the event of dissolution of the registered owner, the registration of a collective trademark may be cancelled. It may also be cancelled if the registered owner no longer satisfies the requirements of the Proclamation, has used the trademark outside of the conditions specified in the statutes, or if the statutes contain provisions against public order or morality. In the event of cancellation, the trademark cannot be re-registered or used in any way for a period of seven years.

The statutes governing the use of a registered collective trademark must be open to public inspection and any amendment to the statutes must be filed with the Office and registered before becoming effective. The Office may publish the amended statute to invite opposition and observations, if necessary.

In summary, collective trademarks in Ethiopia provide a means for trade unions, trade union federations, or associations to protect the rights of their members through the registration of a trademark with the Office. The statutes governing the use of the trademark must be submitted and open to public inspection, and the registration may be cancelled in certain circumstances.