Colombia Joins the Madrid System
06 Jun, 2012
Colombia became the 87th member of the international trademark system following the deposit of its instrument of accession to the Madrid Protocol for the International Registration of Marks by Vice President Angelino Garzón with WIPO Director General Francis Gurry on May 29, 2012. The treaty will enter into force with respect to Colombia, on August 29, 2012. The Madrid System for the International Registration of Marks (Madrid system) offers trademark owners a cost effective, user friendly and streamlined means of protecting and managing their trademark portfolio internationally.
Colombia is the second country in the Latin American region to join the Madrid trademark filing system. Mr. Gurry welcomed Colombia’s accession as boding well for the further expansion of the Madrid system. “I am hopeful that other countries in the region will follow Colombia’s example,” he said, noting “The greater the geographical coverage of the Madrid system, the greater the benefits it offers to brand owners the world over.” The Philippines recently acceded to the Madrid system and several countries – including India, Mexico and New Zealand – have completed domestic legislative processes to pave the way to accession.
Mr. Garzón said joining the international trademark system is a positive development for Colombia. “We believe our accession to the Madrid Protocol will indeed serve as a useful tool to promote our economic development, taking in consideration the multiple advantages it offers,” he said. Mr. Garzón commended Colombia’s private sector, saying “This achievement has been possible thanks to the support of the Colombian private sector, which recognizes its benefits as an instrument to enhance the competitiveness of our enterprises, especially small and medium ones.”
Colombia becomes the third Spanish speaking country in the Madrid system and the first to accede since the introduction of Spanish as a working language of the Madrid system in 2004.
The Madrid system is equally attractive to large businesses, as to small and medium-sized enterprises, which are the largest users of the system. Despite challenging economic conditions, 2011 saw the highest number of international trademark applications ever filed under the Madrid system, with 42,270 applications, or a 6.5 % increase compared to 2010.