The trade mark outlook across Asia is rapidly changing. The large developing economic markets in Asia are generally great untapped resources in the trade mark landscape. These markets are maturing at a rapid rate and local authorities are doing their best to ensure that trade mark law keeps up-to-date.

After China’s successful implementation of its new trade mark law last year, Indonesia is following suit and is currently in the process of updating its trade mark law.

A draft of the new trade mark law governing Indonesia was tabled to the Indonesia parliament on 10 June 2015. This new law is expected to be passed shortly and should enter into effect by the end of 2015.

One of the drivers of the new law is the push by Indonesian authorities to speed up the current timetable for trade mark applications. The new law will limit the time that the Indonesian Trade Marks Office has to examine an application (down to 8 months). This means that brand owners will know the fate of their trade marks in Indonesia sooner and should allow for the Indonesian Examiner’s to adopt a more uniform approach to examination.

Amongst the changes tabled will be the introduction of ‘non-traditional’ marks, such as sound, scent and three-dimensional trade marks. Previously these marks have been unregistrable in Indonesia.

Importantly, the new law will also allow Indonesia to meet the requirements for ascension to the Madrid Protocol, meaning that brand owners should, in the long term, be able to designate Indonesia as part of an International Registration and take advantage of the benefits of this system.