The Madrid Protocol is a system of trade marking that allows a single application to be made designating multiple signatory countries ("an International Registration"). It is a way for trademark applicants to lower costs, and not have to make separate applications across multiple jurisdictions.
Last year Indonesia became the 100th signatory to the protocol and at the start of this year began accepting applications. It has now published its first batch of marks for opposition, which will be substantively examined after any such oppositions.
Part of the instrument for including Indonesia in the Madrid Protocol allows for holders of existing International Registrations to make an application to have Indonesia added to its mark. This could provide a very cost-effective way for International Registration holders to gain protection in southeast Asia's biggest trade mark jurisdiction. It will also be possible to have an existing Indonesian mark added to an International Registration (including its priority date).
What this means in practice is that if a business owns an Indonesian mark significantly older than its International Registration under the Madrid Protocol, it will be able to apply to have its Indonesian registration added to its International one, and have the earlier priority date included also. This will strengthen the business's International Registration by backdating its priority date.
The priority date is important: it is assumed that an applicant will have the right to file further applications for the same mark in the same classes elsewhere, provided no other applicant claims an earlier priority date.
If you have any questions on the above, please do not hesitate to contact the team at McDaniel & Co. on 0191 281 4000 or email@example.com: EU/International, Trade Marks