Patents of Invention

Although the former territories of Tanganyika and Zanzibar form one political union, the United Republic of Tanzania, separate patent, trademark and design applications still have to be filed in each of these territories.

– The Patents Act 1987, as amended in 1991.
– The Patents Regulations 1994.

Membership in International Conventions

– Tanzania (but not Zanzibar) is a member of the Paris Convention, Lisbon Act and Stockholm Act for Articles 13 to 30 (although this is irrelevant for the purposes of patent applications).
– Convention Establishing the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO), since December 30, 1983.
– WTO’s TRIPS Agreement, since January 1, 1995.
– ARIPO, Harare Protocol, since September 1, 1999.
– Patent Cooperation Treaty (PCT), since September 14, 1999.

Filing, Protection

Applicant: the proprietor of a British patent.

Novelty: application must be made within three years of the date of grant of the British patent. A patent registration may be revoked on the same grounds as under British law and the manufacture, use or sale of the invention in Tanzania before the priority date applicable to the British patent is relevant.

Kinds of protection available: registrations based on granted British patents only. Registration confers on the proprietor the same privileges and rights, subject to the laws of Tanzania.

Examination procedure: no examination other than as to form.

Opposition: four months from publication.

Duration: continues in force for as long as the British patent remains in force. The Registrar must be notified of any extension, lapse, revocation and restoration after the lapse of the British patent. No such extension or restoration has any force in Tanzania unless the Registrar has been notified.

Annuities: payable every year from the filing date for U.K. and/or European patents registered in Tanzania.

Marking of patented goods: not required.

Assignment: must be registered to be effective against third parties.

Compulsory licenses: no provision exists for the grant of compulsory licenses and working is thus not necessary.

Filing requirements for an application (to be sent to resident agent):
1. Form of authorization (not legalized);
2. Application form (not legalized);
3. 2 certified copies of the specification of the British patent and drawings, if any;
4. Certificate by the British Comptroller giving full particulars of the grant of the British patent.

Electronic filing: available. 

Electronic signatures: are accepted (must be readable).

PCT applications: time limit for entering the national phase under Chapter I: 21 months, under Chapter II: 31 months, and through ARIPO Chapters I and II: 31 months.