Heavily trade-dependent, Thailand exports over US$250 billion worth of goods and services annually. Foreign companies must understand trademark protections in the country if it is a key sourcing destination as the safeguard of designs and other intellectual properties are directly related to the maintenance of profits and brand value.
Trademarks, certification marks, collective marks, and service marks in Thailand are protected under the Trademark Act B.E.2543 (1991) as amended by the Trademark Act (No.3) B.E.2559 (2017).
Further, Thailand is a signatory to both the Paris Convention for the Protection of Industrial Property, the Madrid Agreement Concerning the International Registration of Marks (Madrid Protocol), and the Patent Cooperation Treaty (PCT) and has acceded to the World Trade Organization (WTO) Agreement on the Trade Related Aspects of International Property Rights (TRIPs).
The Madrid Protocol allows a trademark owner in a member state of the Madrid system to extend the trademark to any other member state, by applying for international registration. This enables the trademark owner to establish multiple trademark registrations in various jurisdictions. The period of protection lasts for 10 years, after which it can be extended for another 10 years.
How do you register a trademark in Thailand?
Trademarks are registered with the Department of Intellectual Property. However, the applicant must have a fixed address in Thailand – non-residents can only register by appointing a Thai resident and granting them the power of attorney.
Applicants must know that some marks are forbidden under the Trademark Act, which include:
Any mark contrary to public morality, order, or policy;
Marks that are identical to marks prescribed by Ministerial notifications;
National flags or emblems of Thailand, royal standard flags, or national flags of foreign countries;
Royal names or monograms; or
Marks that are similar to medals, diplomas, or certificates issued by the Thai government or Thai government agency.
What are the required documents?
The documents and information required are as follows: