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    1. Laos General Information:

    The Lao People's Democratic Republic (ສາທາລະນະລັດ ປະຊາທິປະໄຕ ປະຊາຊົນລາວ) is a landlocked country in the heart of the Indochinese peninsula of Mainland Southeast Asia, bordered by Myanmar (Burma) and China to the northwest, Vietnam to the east, Cambodia to the southwest, and Thailand to the west and southwest.

    With the population of about 7 million while the area covers about 238,000 km2, Laos is rich in mineral resources and imports petroleum and gas. Metallurgy is an important industry, and the government hopes to attract foreign investment to develop the substantial deposits of coal, gold, bauxite, tin, copper, and other valuable metals. In addition, the country's plentiful water resources and mountainous terrain enable it to produce and export large quantities of hydroelectric energy. 

    Major international companies have begun to invest in Lao Special Economic Zones, particularly near Savannakhet and Vientiane. Investors include Toyota, Nikon, and Essilor. Coca Cola opened a bottling plant in 2015. GE has a significant interest in the hydropower sector.

    2. Laos Legal framework:

    The Intellectual Property Rights in Laos are governed by Laos IP Law No. 01/NA dated December 20, 2011 which cover IP matters of patents, petty patents, industrial designs, trademarks, copyright, trade names, layout designs of intergrated circuits, geographical indications, trade secrets and plant varieties.

    Treaties signed by Laos include the Paris Convention, the Patent Cooperation Treaty. the Convention Establishing WIPO and ASEAN Patent Examination Cooperation.

    Protection mechanisms in Laos are based on following main points:

    (i) First-to-file rule

    Laos Department of Intellectual Property (DIP) accepts the first-to-file rule for almost IP filings except well-known trademarks under the Paris Convention or trademarks widely used and recognized. 

    (ii) Priority right rule

    Applicants can claim priority under Paris Convention. For trademarks and industrial designs, applications can be filed within 6 months from the priority date. For patents, applications can be filed within 12 months from the priority date.

    Special rule for priority for trademarks: Laos DIP can accept a wider scope of description of goods/services for trademarks filing in Laos claiming priority from earliest applications with narrower scope of description of goods/services.

    (iii) Other practices:

    DIP accepts multi-class trademark applications.

    There is no limitation for goods/services in each class. A basic fee is applied for each class.

    Patent granting is mainly based on examination result from foreign countries.

    3. Patent Office contact details:

    Lao Department of Intellectual Property (Lao DIP) is the Authority that deals with all intellectual property matters in Laos.

    Laos Department of Intellectual Property

    P.O. Box: 2279
    Nahaidyao Street
    Vientiane, Lao PDR

    Tel: +856 21 213 470 (IP Division Ext 119)

    Fax: +856 21 213 472

    Email: sitha@most.gov.la


    For more information about Laos Intellectual Property, please do not hesitate to contact us athoai le tan


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