The European Commission published on 27 March 2013 a press release announcing a reform of the trade mark regime, implying a revision of the system in force. The main target is to promote the innovation and the economic growth, by making the trade mark system more accessible, more efficient and less expensive.
The proposal for a directive of the European Parliament and of the Council n°2013/0089 (COD) of 27 March 2013 intends to recast Directive n°89/104/EEC of the Council of 21 December 1988, codified as Directive n°2008/95/EC. This proposal intends to: (i) modernise and improve existing provisions, in particular regarding the definition of a trade mark and the issue of counterfeit products in transit, (ii) achieve greater approximation of substantive law, in particular regarding collective marks, (iii) achieve alignment of principal procedural rules, by notably obliging Member States to provide for an administrative procedure to challenge the validity of a trade mark registration before their offices, and (iv) facilitate cooperation between offices.
The proposal for a regulation of the European Parliament and of the Council n°2013/0088 (COD) of 27 March 2013 intends to amend Council Regulation (EC) n°207/2009 of 26 February 2009 on the Community trade mark. This proposal provides: (i) to adapt terminology, in particular by changing "Community trade mark" to "European trade mark", and to have a Common approach on Union decentralised agencies, (ii) to streamline procedures, (iii) to increase legal certainty, by adopting the same rules as those provided within the proposal for a directive, (iv) to have a framework for cooperation between the Agencies and Member State offices.
The proposals for a directive and for a regulation will have to be adopted by the European Parliament and the Council according to the codecision procedure.
Finally, the project also implies an amendment of Regulation n°2869/95 regarding the taxes to be paid to the OHIM.