Intellectual Property Unit

The Intellectual Property Unit provides services in accordance to the Registration of United Kingdom Trademark Ordinance (Cap 88), the Registration of United Kingdom Patent Ordinance (Cap 87), the Copyright Ordinance (Cap 16) and the United Kingdom Designs Protection (Cap 99).

Kiribati became member of the World Intellectual Property Organization in 2013.

Key functions and roles:

  • Registration of new Trademarks and Patents
  • Registration of renewal, change of name or address for Trademarks and Patents
  • Providing advice in Intellectual Property matters

What is a Trademark?

Trademarks may contain words, designs, numerals, logos, symbols, et cetera, that a business uses to distinguish its products from other businesses. They have been used to simplify the identification by consumers of goods or services, as well as promoting their quality and value. Two main characteristics for a trademark: it must be distinctive and it must not be deceptive.

Examples:

Words Trademark: ‘HP’ for computers

Designs Trademark:

Names Trademark: ‘HILTON’ for hotels

Letters Trademark: ‘ANZ’ for Banks

Symbols:

Pictures:

 

What is a Patent?

A patent is a document issued by the Government that describes an invention and grants the owner exclusive rights to his/her invention for a limited period of time. Inventions are defined as solutions to a technical problem.

Examples:

Sunglasses, electric fans, etc.

Who should consider registering a Trademark or Patent?

For Trademarks:

Any businesses or individuals, small or big, that want to attract customers by distinguishing their products from that of their competitors by the quality and value they offer.

For Patents:

Any person that has an invention that is new and useful in improving the quality of life.

How to file documents with the Intellectual Property Office:

For registration of New Trademarks or Patents, application for renewal, change of name or address of registered Trademarks and Patents, send us originals of the following documents;

  • United Kingdom Certified Copy
  • Authorization of Agent form
  • Copy of official filing fee detail (Please refer Trademark Fee Schedule and Patent Fee Schedule for more information)
  • 5 prints of the mark (for New Trademark Registrations ONLY)
  • Deed of Assignment (for Application of Trademark Assignment ONLY)
  • European Specification (for Patents Application ONLY)

These documents can be provided in person by attending the Intellectual Property Unit, Fair Trading Regulatory Division, Business Regulatory Center, Ministry of Commerce, Industry and Cooperatives or by Postal Address at Ministry of Commerce, Industry & Cooperatives, PO Box 510, Betio, Tarawa, Republic of Kiribati.

Recent Development

  • Endorsement and Implementation of the National Intellectual Property Strategy 2017 (NIPS)
  • Drafting of the new Copyright Law (In progress)
  • Considering Accession to the Berne Convention for the Protection of Literary and Artistic Works
  • Considering Accession to the Marrakesh Treaty to Facilitate access to published works for persons who are blind, visually impaired or otherwise print disabled