Obtaining trade mark protection in some of Australia’s closest neighbours can be less than straight forward.

It’s a strange fact that the only way to protect your trade mark in many Pacific island nations is to register your trade mark somewhere else.  The table at the bottom of this post sets out options for a number of Pacific Island Nations.

For example, it’s not possible to register your trade mark in the Solomon Islands if you first have not registered your trade mark in the United Kingdom. Similarly, Fiji trade mark law makes provision for “re-registration” of a registered United Kingdom trade mark.

It’s not possible at all to register your trade mark in New Caledonia. Rather, registering your trade mark in France will give you rights that automatically extend to places like New Caledonia and French Polynesia.

Similarly, if you’re looking to provide your goods or services in Guam, you’ll need to look at registering your trade mark in the United States of America. The rights provided by a United States trade mark registration automatically extend to Guam.

Some countries have no trade mark legislation at all. In such cases, the best approach to alert the public that you consider your trade mark to be your valuable intellectual property is by the publication of Cautionary Notices.

Cautionary Notices, essentially print media advertisements alerting the public to your intellectual property ownership, are usually published at regular intervals in newspapers that have a national circulation.

Our Trade Marks team at Michael Buck IP are able to give you an idea of costs and processes associated with protecting your trade mark in any of the countries contained in the table.

Please contact Geraldine at mail@mbip.com.au or call (07) 3369 2226 for further information.

Pacific islands table


* We recommend the use of Cautionary Notices where trade mark protection cannot be obtained by either a national trade mark application or a re-registration process.