Strictly speaking, in the Kingdom of Swaziland trademark registration is not mandatory. The rights to a trademark in this jurisdiction are granted to the person or company that first uses the trademark. However, it is highly advisable that a trademark be registered. This may prove to be crucial in cases of conflicts regarding ownership of the trademark with a third party or infringement. Local registration for a trademark in Swaziland is done through the Ministry of Commerce Industry and Trade Intellectual Property Office.
Locally registered trademark will be valid for a period of ten (10) years starting from the date on which it was filed. They may be renewed as many times as the owner wishes every ten years.
Trademark registration for Swaziland may also be done regionally, as this country is a member of the African Regional Industrial Property Organization (ARIPO) and a party to the Banjul Protocol. Registration through ARIPO grants protection and recognition in the following ten countries: Botswana, Lesotho, Liberia, Malawi, Namibia, Sao Tome and Principe, Swaziland, Uganda, Tanzania (mainland) and Zimbabwe. For more information please visit our page on trademark services in ARIPO..
If you register a combined trademark (which includes both word elements and figurative elements) in Swaziland, the exclusive right to use the trademark is limited to using of the trademark in the exact configuration or way in which it was filed and registered. If you wish to use the word element of your trademark separately from the logo (or vice versa), it is recommended you register for another trademark including only the word or figurative elements you wish to use and protect separately.
Nevertheless, if a third party eventually intends to register or use a trademark for similar goods or services that includes a primary or distinct part or portion of your trademark, you will have the right to oppose the application based on confusing similarity. The probabilities of success for an opposition will vary in each case depending on the circumstances.
Opposition actions against conflicting applied-for trademarks may be presented within a period of three (3) months following the publication of the conflicting trademark application in the local trademark gazette.
If you would like for the figurative or design elements of your trademark to be considered when assessing your trademark for registration in Swaziland (Trademark Search Report), contact us directly in order to determine if we may be able to offer this in this jurisdiction. In such cases, prices for service and estimated delivery times may vary.
Swaziland is a member state to the Madrid Protocol. Thus, the extension of an international registration of a trademark via the Madrid System is possible for this country. For further information regarding our services for trademark filing through the Madrid System click here.