Fiji now has a new Trade Marks Act, to replace its almost 90 year old Trade Marks Act 1933.

Nick Holmes
Davies Collison Cave

The new Fijian Trademarks Act 2021 was gazetted on Friday 20 August 2021 and should come into force in the very near future, once the commencement date is announced. There is no certainty regarding its commencement date, but Trade mark lawyers will be hoping that it is sooner rather than later.

The new Trademarks Act introduces a raft of welcome updates, not least of which is its adoption of the Nice Classification of Goods and Services. Until last week, Fijian trademark law relied upon an antiquated British system of 50 different good classes and 10 subclasses.

Conveniently, the Fijian Trademarks Act 2021 is very similar to the New Zealand Trade Marks Act 2002 (and thus also similar to the Singapore Trade Marks Act 1998 and the United Kingdom Trade Marks Act 1994). Of course, as with each of those countries the devil is in the detail with the new Fijian Trademarks Act and only a brave (or foolish) attorney would assume that the Act or its interpretation will be the same as New Zealand trade mark law in particular.

This is a very welcome update to intellectual property law in the South Pacific and is accompanied by other legislation relating to designs and patents.

Please call any of the Trade Marks team at Davies Collison Cave if you have any questions regarding the new Fijian trademarks law and how it can best be used to protect your brands in Fiji and the South Pacific.

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