A workshop was held in Hanoi on November 18-19 to discuss trademark protection for exports and the effective use of the Madrid system to protect intellectual property rights for Vietnamese exports in foreign markets.

The event was organised by the National Office of Intellectual Property (NOIP) under the Vietnamese Ministry of Sciences and Technology and the Economic Cooperation Programme of the ASEAN-Australia-New Zealand Free Trade Agreement, with assistance from the World Intellectual Property Organisation (WIPO).

Speaking at the event, NOIP Deputy Director Tran Huu Nam said Vietnamese businesses increasingly attach importance to registering trade name protection for their products. However, he noted that they have not focused on undertaking this process for exports, especially in big potential markets.

In 2012, NOIP received over 5,000 applications from international organisations wishing to register trademarks in Vietnam under the Madrid System. In the same year the office only received 113 registration applications for products of Vietnamese origin.

Luu Duc Thanh from NOIP underlined the importance of registration of trade name protection for exports, saying that the move helps enterprises develop their export market, while protecting them from unhealthy competition.

Vietnam is now a member of the WIPO, the Madrid System for the international registration of trademarks (Madrid Agreement and Madrid Protocol). Therefore, Vietnamese enterprises can submit registration trademark applications to other member countries of the agreement and protocol through the National Office of Intellectual Property.

There are currently 90 countries registered with the Madrid System.-VNA