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OAPI

Patents, Trade Marks & Designs

OAPI is a regional filing system which covers Benin, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Chad, Comoros, Congo, Equatorial Guinea, Gabon, Guinea, Guinea Bissau, Ivory Coast, Mali, Mauritania, Niger, Senegal and Togo. A single application automatically covers all countries mentioned above. It is not possible to designate the countries of interest.

OAPI Trade Marks

Types of Trade Marks:

  • Goods and services
  • Certification marks

Filing Requirements:

  • Simply signed Power of Attorney
  • Details of the Applicant (full names, physical address, nationality/country of incorporation)
  • Representation of the trade mark(s)
  • List of goods and/or services
  • Certified copy of priority document (if applicable)

Classification:

The Nice Classification of Goods and Services is followed.

DURATION/RENEWALS:

10 years from filing date and renewable every 10 years.

International and Regional Systems:

  • Paris Convention
  • Madrid Protocol

OAPI Patents

Filing Requirements:

Non-PCT applications:

  • Simply signed Power of Attorney (must be filed within 3 months of the filing date)
  • Specification, claims, drawings and abstract with English or French translation (required upon filing)
  • Deed of assignment (must be filed within 3 months of the filing date)
  • Certified copy of the priority document (if applicable) with verified English or French translation (must be filed within 6 months of the filing date)

PCT applications:

  • Simply signed Power of Attorney (must be filed within 3 months of the filing date)
  • Specification, claims, drawings and abstract with English or French translation (required upon filing)
  • Deed of assignment (must be filed within 3 months of the filing date)
  • Published International application (required upon filing)
  • International Search Report and International Preliminary Report on Patentability (can be late filed)

Novelty:

Absolute novelty required.

Patentability:  

Methods of medical diagnosis, treatment or surgery are not patentable.

Examination: 

Formal examination.

Duration/Renewals:

The patent has a duration of 20 years from date of filing. Annual renewal fees are payable from the first anniversary of the filing date.

International and Regional Systems:

  • Paris Convention
  • PCT

OAPI Designs

Filing Requirements:

  • Power of Attorney (can be late filed)
  • Drawings, photographs or other graphic representations of the design (required upon filing)
  • A statement indicating the kind of products for which the design is to be used (required upon filing)
  • Certified copy of priority document (if applicable) (must be filed within 3 months of the filing date)
  • Verified translation of the priority document if not filed in English or French (must be filed within 3 months of the filing date)
  • Deed of assignment (must be filed within 3 months of the filing date)

Duration/Renewals:

The design has an initial term of 5 years from date of filing, with a possible extension of 2 further term of 5 years.

International and Regional Systems:

  • Paris Convention
  • The Hague Agreement