A trademark is any sign distinguishing goods, whether products or services, and include in particular names represented in a distinctive manner, signatures, words, letters, numerals, designs, symbols, signposts, stamps, seals, drawings, engravings, a combination of distinctly formed colors and any other combination of these elements if used, or meant to be used, to distinguish the products of a particular industry, agricultural, forest or mining venture or any goods, or to indicate the origin of products or goods, or their quality, category, guarantee, preparation process, or to indicate the provision of any service.
In all cases, a trademark shall be a sign that is recognizable by sight.
The Department of Trade Registry shall be competent to register the trademarks in the special register of such marks, in accordance with the provisions of this Law and its Regulations, without prejudice to the provisions of Articles 3 and 4 of Law No. 115 of 1958 on correspondence and signposts imposing the use of Arabic.
The person who has registered a trademark and who has made use of it for a period of five years as of the date of its registration, shall be deemed the owner of such a trademark, unless precedence of use by a third party is proven.
A prior user of the mark may, within the said period of five years, challenge the validity of its registration .
The registration of a mark may, however, be challenged at any time, where the registration is made in bad faith.
Without prejudice to the provisions of international conventions in force in Egypt, any natural person or legal entity, Egyptian or foreign, belonging to or having the center of his or its effective activity in a country or entity member in the World Trade Organization or who applies reciprocity to Egypt, shall have the right to apply for the registration of a trademark with the Department of Trade Registry in Egypt, with all attendant rights in conformity with the provisions of this Law.
Nationals of all member countries of the World Trade Organization shall benefit from any advantage, preference, privilege or immunity granted by any other law to nationals of any state in connection with the rights provided for in this Chapter, unless such advantage, preference or immunity derives from:
(One) agreements on judicial assistance or agreements on law enforcement of general nature;
(Two) agreements in connection with the protection of intellectual property rights which came into force prior to 1st January 1995.
The following shall not be registered as trademarks or components thereof:
(1) Marks devoid of any distinctive character, or composed of signs or statements which only usage grants to the products, or which are the normal picture or image thereof.
(2) Any mark which is contrary to public order or morality.
(3) Public armorial bearings, flags and other emblems pertaining to the State or any other state, regional or international organizations, as well as any imitations thereof.
(4) Marks which are identical with, or similar to, symbols of religious character.
(5) Symbols of the Red Cross or Red Crescent, or any other emblem of the same character, as well as any imitations thereof.
(6) The portrait of an individual or his armorial bearings, except with his consent.
(7) Designations of honorary degrees which the applicant is unable to prove his right thereto.
(8) Marks and geographical indications which are likely to mislead or confuse the public or which contain false descriptions as to the origin of products, whether goods or services, or their other qualities, as well as the signs that contain an indication of a fictitious, imitated or forged trade name.
The owner of a well-known trademark, worldwide and in Egypt, shall have the right to enjoy the protection conferred by this Law even if such a mark is not registered in Egypt.
The Trade Registry Department shall ex officio, reject any application to register any mark which is identical with a well-known mark and is intended for products which are identical with those of the well-known mark, unless the application is submitted by the owner of the well-known mark.
The preceding provision shall apply to applications intended for products which are not identical with those of the well-known mark, where the well-known mark is registered in a
country member of the World Trade Organization and in Egypt, and where the use of the mark in relation to those non-identical products is meant to lead people to believe that a connection exists between the owner of the well-known mark and those products, and that such a use may be prejudicial to the interests of the owner of the well-known mark.
A collective trademark is used to distinguish a product of a group of persons who belong to a specific entity, even where such entity has no industrial or commercial enterprise of its own.
The application for registration of a collective mark shall be submitted by a representative of such an entity.
The competent minister may in the interest of the public authorize natural persons or legal entities involved in the control or examination of products in respect of their origin, components, method of manufacture, quality, authenticity or any other distinctive characteristic, to register a mark which shall serve to certify that such control or examination of such products is underway.
Such a mark shall not be disposed of without a special authorization from the competent minister.
The right of the mark owner to prevent third parties from the import, use, sale or distribution of products distinguished by such a mark shall lapse when the owner undertakes the marketing of those products in any country, or authorizes a third party to do so.
Temporary protection is granted to marks on products displayed at national or international exhibitions. Such protection shall not benefit from the extension provided for in Article 75.
The competent minister shall issue a decision designating such exhibitions and the Regulations shall prescribe the terms, conditions and procedure for the grant of such a protection.