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Newsletter/September 25, 1999 No. 56

Revision of the Examination Criteria for Trademark and Design

The Korean Industrial Property Office (KIPO) has revised the criteria for examinations regarding the trademark and design patents and has enforced the new requirements as of August 2, 1999.
The main points of KIPO's trademark revisions update the examination criteria to keep up with the trends of the information society.
Such trends as commercial transactions using electronic equipment (e-commerce), judgement standards for the creation of domain names, and a new criteria regarding the examination procedures for the three-dimensional trademark and color trademark will be put into place.
Moreover, KIPO has established an examination criteria regarding the divisions of applications and conversion of applications, and an interpretation standard related to the scope of corrections for designated goods, and complemented the examination procedures with regulations ensuring the universal usage of one application for the differing classes.
This trademark examination revision enables the existing regulations to be clearly interpreted through phase revision, and consequently, makes it easier to understand the examination criteria and ensures the consistency in trademark examination.
Regarding the revision related to the design examination criteria, KIPO has expanded the scope of contravention of the public order and morals, in order to reject design applications violating fair competition standards and the international fiduciary as it relates to imitation and so on.

KIPO plans to encourage the applications of intellectual property rights by medium and small enterprises .

KIPO plans to increase the number of the medium and small enterprises having the intellectual property rights.
At this time, KIPO is carrying on a campaign for the medium sized businesses trying to acquire intellectual property rights.
As part of the campaign, KIPO will reduce the application fees by 5 0∼70% and the fees incurred by the small and medium sized enterprises which file utility model or patent applications, or who complete the registration applications.
A free patent affairs office will be designated by KIPO and inaugurated this coming November in order to support the development of technology and the acquisition of rights.
Moreover, KIPO will prepare a standard Patent Map (PM) model showing the 15 advancements in technologies occurring by the end of this year, and supply the PM to medium or venture enterprises next year.
The KIPRIS (Korean Intellectual Property Right Information Service) will be administered without a fee from next January.
An internet patent mart (IP mart) will be inaugurated next year, so that direct transaction through the cyberspace can be performed.
The patent mart will be held every other month from next year.

The number of foreigners applying for trademark is 11,284, as of June 1999.

Recently, the number of foreign applications for trademarks in Korea has increased.
As of June of this year, the number of applications stood at 11,284. This is an increase of 23.4% compared to last year.
Foreign trademark applications had increased 12% every year by 1997, but decreased by about 11% in the first half of last year when the IMF began supporting our country.
The numbers have increased with the recent business recovery and the completion of structural reforms.
As a result of classifying trademark applications made by foreigners, the U. S. A. had 3,621 cases, or 36% of the total.
Japan was second with 2,802 cases, Germany with 1,006, France had 924, Switze
 
 
 
 
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