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Slowdown in EUTM growth

The dramatic increase in EU trademark filings of the past few years looks set to slow, EUIPO Executive Director António Campinos said

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Speaking at the EUTM and RCD Users Meeting at INTA, he said that the Office expects to receive some 141,000 trademark applications this year, which represents a growth rate of 4.6%, compared to a rate of 9% last year. Applications for registered Community designs are expected to grow at about 8%.

It is not yet clear what has caused the slowdown, but it could be due to Brexit (the UK IPO has received a surge in trademark applications in the past year) or delays in processing international applications at WIPO. Direct filings at EUIPO are growing at about 7%.

Despite the slower growth, Campinos said there is “remarkable resilience in demand from business” and that EUIPO is coping well in response. He added that the Office will continue to listen to and be driven by users’ needs.

This week EUIPO launched an Open Data Platform, which makes all its data available to users. This means they can download as an XML file the latest data on trademarks, representatives, international registrations, designs and applicants. However personal information is not included in compliance with the EU Data Protection Regulation.

Also at the Users Meeting, Dimitris Botis provided an update on the EUTM legal reforms, in particular on the changes entering into force on October 1 this year. These changes include the abolition of the graphical representation requirement. A new Implementing Regulation sets out the rules for representing various types of trademark, such as pattern marks and multimedia marks, as Botis explained.

The Office is still working through the Article 28(8) declarations filed last year, which were necessary following the IP Translator case. Botis said that there were objections in 44% of cases, so it will be some time before they have all been examined.

José Izquierdo provided an update on the latest cooperation initiatives, including the extension of the drag-and-drop tool in eSearch Plus to TMview, which is being announced today.

Those at the session also received an update on the work of the EU Observatory on Infringements of IP Rights by its director, Paul Maier. Read more about the recent reports published by the Observatory on pages 14 to 15 of this issue.

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