In brief 

We depict below the panoramic overview of intellectual property filings as collected by the Vietnam IP Office (VNIPO) in 2021 in illustration of the disruption caused by the global pandemic for the year. The data cut-off date was 31 December 2021.

Key takeaways

The year 2021 came as the second year of the global pandemic with challenges for Vietnam. The impact of the pandemic appears to be reflective in the IP filing activities in the country with downturns counted in some aspects. That said, Vietnam managed to retain its policies and commitment to advancing science and technology by maintaining the positive filing figures in patents and industrial designs.

In more detail

1. Trademarks

The total number of new applications (both national applications and Madrid applications) filed with the VNIPO decreased by 3.7%. Last year, it saw an increase of 2.8%.

In spite of this decrease, the VNIPO still experienced an even more substantial delay in their examination of trademarks, which was reflected by a decrease of 4.06% in the total number of newly granted trademarks. In 2020, the VNIPO managed to accumulate a 15.5% rise in this regard.

In 2021, as part of the efforts in clearing their heavy backlogs, the VNIPO, among others, recruited new examiners to ease the staff shortage issues at their examination centers.

2. Patents

The VNIPO received 9.1% more newly filed applications (both inventions and utility solutions) in 2021, as compared to 2020.

2021 also saw a 14.3% YOY downturn for the number of newly granted patents. 2020 was a more productive year with a 63.2% YOY growth in the total number of newly granted patents.

3. Industrial designs

Vietnam has started receiving La Hay/Hague applications for industrial designs protection since 2020. The year of 2021 came with a 5.1% YOY growth in the total number of new design applications filed with the VNIPO. Of note, it was a 6.5% YOY drop in 2020.

The VNIPO also granted protection for 1.8% more designs in 2021 - a YOY comparison.

4. Geographical indications (GI)

In 2021, the VNIPO received only 11 newly filed GI applications and granted only 14 new GI registrations. 2020 remains a historic year for the VNIPO with the peak of 22 newly filed GI applications and 22 granted GI registrations.

By the end of 2021, Vietnam has protected 115 GIs, including 106 Vietnamese GIs and nine foreign GIs (through direct filing procedures with the VNIPO), in addition to 169 European GIs as protected under the regime of the European Union – Vietnam Free Trade Agreement (EVFTA).