The National Intellectual Property Service (Senapi), responsible for administering the intellectual property regime in Bolivia, has revealed during its most recent meeting on intellectual property, that trademark registrations in the country are currently hitting 7.000 a year.

“One aspect to highlight is the growth in the registration of national brands in recent years,” explains the agency in a press release.

In fact, between 2006 and 2017 trademark registrations for international brands was 70.1% versus 29.9% for national brands, but the latter gained traction from 2018 onwards when the registration of international brands fell to 60.2% compared to 39.8% for national brands.

By 2019, international brands registered in Senapi dropped to 57% and domestic brands rose to 43%.

“As you can see,” highlights Senapi, “the trend of 70% versus 30% was changing in favor of national brands, howing that there is growth, greater appreciation for the creation of national brands in particular and greater interest in the protection of its intangible assets.”

However, Senapi also notes that there is still a significant gap between trademark applications and those that were actually registered. In 2019 alone, out of the 8,008 applications, 1,083 were denied.

“This difference between the requested and the registered trademarks is due to different reasons: mainly because of the similarity in the names of the brands; due to the lack of distinctiveness, because they are descriptive of the type of product or service, or are generic or commonly used names,” details the entity.

Among other reasons why the registration of a brand is denied, there is also the fact that the design of the brand includes images of national symbols or because they do not meet the requirements of novelty, in the case of three-dimensional marks.

According to Senapi, denied applications may be minimized to the extent that employers, brand creators, trademark attorneys and all intellectual property actors are increasingly informed and trained in the registration process and its requirements.

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Sofia Vanoli