News & insights

MENA: Live Updates of IP Offices in Wake of COVID-19 Pandemic

July 23, 2020

As governments begin easing travel restrictions in the wake of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19), we are witnessing the reopening of several Intellectual Property Offices in the Middle East and North Africa region. With this update, we want to assure you that our main priority remains to ensure the safety and well-being of our people, families, clients, and the communities in which we live and work.

In order to ensure an uninterrupted service, you may send all your instructions, queries, and documents directly to your account managers and the people you are corresponding with at the offices concerned. We will docket all the instructions we receive from you, prepare all the required forms, and diarize all approaching deadlines in order to ensure proper follow-up and organization.

This article is being updated regularly. All new information is below.

Country

PTO Status

Deadlines

Submission of Original Documents & POAs

Last Updated

Afghanistan

Operational

 

All deadlines are automatically extended to the first working day

Scanned copies of documentation and simply signed POAs are accepted

May 29

Algeria

Operational

 

A grace period of one month will be granted once business is back to usual

PTO is operating/simply signed POAs are usually accepted

March 27

Bahrain

Operational

No extension announced yet

All documents are submitted online

March 26

Cyprus

Operational

If by any reason a deadline cannot be met, then a written application requesting an extension of time has to be filed

A scanned copy of the documents and simply signed POAs are usually accepted

March 27

Djibouti

Operational

 

All deadlines are automatically extended

Usual procedure – original documents should be available at the time of filing .A simply signed POA is usually required

June 1

Ethiopia

Operational

All deadlines have been extended to July 19, 2020

 

TMO will be flexible in accepting the soft copies of the same and later originals to follow

April 23

Egypt

Operational

The Patent Office is accepting examination, annuities, searches, Letters Patent,  and certification fees

The Trademark and Patent Offices are accepting scanned documents and simply signed copies of POAs along with an email from the client or/attorney proving The difficulty of legalizing the required POAs. (Original documents should be submitted whenever possible)

June 10

Gaza

Operational

 

All deadlines are automatically extended to May 20, 2020

Extension of time is acceptable due to the current situation. Simply signed POAs are usually acceptable

April 21

Gulf Cooperation Council

Operational

All deadlines are automatically extended to the first working day

All documents are submitted online

April 29

Iraq

Partially Operating (Not accepting new filings or examining old applications until the curfew is lifted)

No extension announced yet

Documents can be submitted within 6 months from filing date

June 15

Iraq (Kurdish Region)

Operational

No extension announced yet

Documents can be submitted within 6 months from filing date

June 15

Jordan

Operational

All deadlines are automatically extended to the first working day

All documents should be submitted

May 6

Kuwait

Operational

All deadlines will be extended according to the closure period

All documents should be submitted once the PTO re-opens

June 30

Lebanon

Operational

No extension announced yet

Simply signed POAs are accepted. No official notification about the submission of original documents

April 9

Libya

Operational

All deadlines are suspended until first working day

Original documents can be submitted online or otherwise sent by courier

May 5

Morocco

Operational

All deadlines are suspended until further notice

Simply signed POAs are usually used. Recordal assignment and merger will be filed later on, because the related documents should be submitted at the PTO

March 31

Oman

All operations suspended until further notice

All deadlines except for priority claims are suspended until further notice

 

All documents should be submitted

June 16

Pakistan

Operational

No extension announced

All documents should be submitted

May 11

Qatar

Operational

No extension announced, however, the pace of processing transactions and delivery of official communications will be very slow. The issuance of all kinds of certificates is temporarily suspended

All original documents can be filed after the force majeure situation is over

May 6

Saudi Arabia

Operational

SAIP announced it will allow extensions of time. Payment of annuities has been extended to August 31, 2020

All original documents can be filed after the force majeure situation is over. Filing can be done with colored scanned copies

June 30

Sudan

Operational

No extension announced yet

Usual procedure – soft copies followed by originals. A simply signed POA is usually required

July 23

Tanzania

Operational

No extension announced yet

Original documents can be submitted online or otherwise sent by courier

April 8

Tunisia

Operational

No extension announced yet

TMO will be flexible during this period. A simply signed POA is usually required

May 11

UAE

Operational

No extension announced yet

Original documents can be submitted online or otherwise sent by courier

March 23

West Bank

Operational

The TMO announced several extensions for filing oppositions against trademarks published in the Official Gazette: for issue 27, the deadline is extended to June 27, 2020, for issue 28, the deadline is extended to July 27, 2020, and for issues 29 and 30, the deadline is extended to August 27, 2020. All other deadlines are extended to June 27, 2020  

A simply signed copy of POA is sufficient and the original may be submitted within three months from the filing date. Due to the current situation, more than one extension of time is acceptable

May 29

Yemen

Operational

No extension announced yet

Original documents should be submitted once received without late surcharges, simply signed copies of the required documents are sufficient at this stage (original documents should be submitted whenever possible)

March 30

Zanzibar

Operational

No extension announced yet

Original documents can be submitted online or otherwise sent by courier

April 8

 

For more information on how to reach a particular office in the Saba IP Network, please click here

Should you have any questions, or require any additional information on the above, please contact us at support@sabaip.com