Trade and Service Marks

– Trademarks Act, 2009, in force since March 24, 2009.
– Trademarks (Amendment) Act, 2015.

Membership in International Conventions

– Convention Establishing the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO), since May 11, 1985.
– Paris Convention for the Protection of Industrial Property, Stockholm Act, since March 3, 1991.
– WTO’s TRIPS Agreement, since January 1, 1995.


Applicant: any person, firm or corporation claiming to be the proprietor of a trademark, used or proposed to be used by him. 

Foreigners and nationals not living in the country: may apply but must furnish an address for service in Bangladesh. 

Trademarks of foreigners: same privileges and restrictions as a citizen of Bangladesh. 

Definition of trademarks: a trademark is a mark used or proposed to be used in relation to goods indicating or so as to indicate a connection in the course of trade between the goods and some person having the right as proprietor or registered user to use it, with or without any indications as to the identity of that person. A mark may comprise a device, brand, heading, label, ticket, name, signature, word, letter or numeral or any combination thereof. 

Scope of protection: registration confers an exclusive right to use the trademark upon or in relation to the goods in respect of which it is registered. 

Marks for services: provided for.

Novelty: not necessary.

Not registrable: no trademark or part of a mark will be registered if it contains any scandalous design or, is likely to deceive or cause confusion, is disentitled to protection in a court of justice or is likely to offend the religious susceptibilities of any class of Bangladeshi citizens, or is contrary to any law in force or contrary to morality. Nor can a word, which is the accepted name of any single chemical element or single chemical compound, be registered. 

National flags: not registrable. 

Names or portraits: if of a living person, then consent of the person whose portrait it is, is necessary. If of a person recently dead, the consent of his legal representatives is required. 

Associated marks: where the proprietor of a trademark is entitled to the exclusive use of any part of that mark separately, he may register the whole and the part as separate trademarks, and such marks shall be associated. Similar or identical marks belonging to one proprietor in respect of the same goods or same description of goods are registered as associated marks.

Priorities: available from all the signatories to the conventions.

Classification: International Classification of Goods and Services (Nice Classification 35 to 45). 

Territory covered: the whole of Bangladesh unless specifically restricted to specified areas or parts of Bangladesh.

Filing requirements for an application (to be sent to resident agent):
1. Power of attorney (no legalization is needed);
2. 12 prints or representations of the trademark;
3. Electrotype or block, one per trademark.

Electronic filing: available. 

Electronic signatures: are accepted during exceptional circumstances. Also, scanned copies of wet signed documents or by digital signature can be submitted at the time of filing, but the original document must be submitted within ninety days.


Amendment of application: amendment permitted by the Registrar upon such terms as he may think fit. An amendment which substantially alters the character or identity of the mark will not be allowed. 

Examination: formal.

Opposition: any person may, within two months of the date of advertisement of an application in the Trade Marks Journal, give notice, in writing, to the Registrar of Trade Marks to the registration of a trademark. No specific grounds for opposition are prescribed.

Disputes about ownership: may be settled by the Registrar. 

Application kept secret: applications are open to inspection but a person who desires to inspect an application may be asked to show that he has an interest in doing so. 

Appeal: an appeal against any decision of the Registrar must be made to the High Court within four months of the date of such a decision. 

Urgent registration: no specific provision provided. 

Provisional registration: not provided for. 

Publication: in the Trade Marks Journal. 

Rectification: an aggrieved person may apply to the Registrar or High Court for the cancellation or rectification of the registration of a trademark on the grounds that an entry was made in the Register without sufficient cause or any other grounds as specified in the Trade Marks Act, 1940.


Beginning of protection: from the date of filing of the application for registration. 

Duration: seven years from the date of application.

Renewals: are for periods of ten years. Renewal may be made not more than six months before the expiration of the last registration. 

Latest term for renewal: on the date of expiry of the last registration. 

Term of grace for renewal: no specified term of grace. However if, on expiry of the last registration of a trademark, the renewal fee is not paid, the Registrar will advertise the fact forthwith in the Trade Marks Journal and if, within four months of that advertisement, the renewal fee with the prescribed form and the prescribed additional fee is received, the Registrar will renew the registration.

User rights: protected on registration of the trademark concerned. 

Obligation to use: where a trademark has not been used before it is tendered for registration, the applicant must have a definite intention of using the mark. It is highly recommended to use a mark as soon as possible either before or after registration.

Marking of registered goods: no specific provisions. A mark should not be described as “Registered” unless it is registered in Bangladesh or there is a clear indication as to the country in which it is registered. 

Modification of the mark: modification of a mark may be permitted by the Registrar, but it must not be such as will substantially alter the character of the mark. 

Changes in the list of goods: permitted but always subject to the Registrar’s discretion. Changes must, however, fall in the same class of goods. 

Assignment: it is permissible to assign registered or unregistered trademarks, but not where multiple rights would be created nor where exclusive rights would be created in different parts of the country as in this case the Registrar’s approval is required. 

Licenses – registered users: use of a mark by a licensee is permitted by a system of registered users whose use of the trademark counts for all purposes as use by the owner. Trafficking in trademarks is not permitted.

Modification of Protection after Registration

Compulsory licenses: not provided for.

Expropriation: not provided for. 

Nullification: not provided for.

Validation of invalidated marks: not provided for. 

Provision for restoration: not provided for. 

Registration of invalidated marks: not provided for. 

Infringement and penalties: infringement occurs when a person who is not the registered proprietor of a trademark uses a trademark which is identical with or closely similar to a registered trademark in respect of the same goods or same description of goods. Infringement action lies only in respect of registered trademark. Passing off action lies in respect of unregistered trademark. The penalties in both the cases are decided by the civil courts of competent jurisdiction. Action for counterfeiting a trademark lies under the statutory provision of the penal code.