Legal notes to patent registration in Afghanistan

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Patent registration in Afghanistan. Afghanistan, officially the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan, is a landlocked country located at the crossroads of Central and South Asia. Recently, several small companies and factories began operating in different parts of Afghanistan, which not only provide revenues to the government but also create new jobs. Afghanistan is a member of WTO, SAARC, ECO, and OIC. It holds an observer status in SCO. In 2018, a majority of imports come from either Iran, China, Pakistan, and Kazakhstan, while 84% of exports are to Pakistan and India. In addition, the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan has also become an attractive destination for foreign businesses, including companies from post-Soviet countries. Accordingly, many businesses want to enter this market and one of the most important preparations a business needs to take before expanding to this country is to learn the procedure of patent registration in Afghanistan.

Patent in Afghanistan

A patent is a type of intellectual property that gives its owner the legal right to exclude others from making, using, or selling an invention for a limited period of years in exchange for publishing an enabling disclosure of the invention.

In order to receive a patent in Afghanistan, the invention must be new, nonobvious, inventive, and industrially applicable.

In addition, an invention can also be an improvement on existing items or methods.

The subjects that are not patentable in Afghanistan are:

  • Discoveries;
  • Laws of nature and mathematical methods;
  • Aesthetic designs;
  • Systems, rules, and methods for the performance of mental labor, games or management as well as computer programs;
  • Presentation of data and abstract ideas.

Once the applicant has applied for patent registration in Afghanistan and obtained a patent for their invention, that invention can not be used, manufactured, duplicated, or sold without the patentee’s authorization.

If an infringement action occurs, the patentee will have the right to sue the infringers to court and apply measures to prevent the infringing actions to continue to happen.

The procedure for patent registration in Afghanistan

At the moment, there is no law on patents in Afghanistan.

The reason why Afghanistan hasn’t had laws on patents is that this country is in constant war and terrorism. Although there have been many changes in recent times, there is still a legal vacuum in this field. Accordingly, this country might not have a patent law any time soon.

As Afghanistan hasn’t had any clear regulations or laws about the patent registration procedure, the best method that the inventor can apply to protect their innovation in this country is to publish a Cautionary Notice in the local Newspaper(s) in the English Language.

In the Cautionary Notice, the applicant needs to state the invention related to a particular matter belongs to the inventors/company.

The publications of cautionary notices are not registered in any official registers, it is more of an advertisement for that invention, making the public recognize that there is such an invention that belongs to some inventors in this country.

However, although it is just an advertisement, it could be a base for claiming priority right in the future when the patent law comes into force in the country.

Accordingly, the publication should be in detail, and not in a short form. If it is published in short form, it may not serve the priority purposes.

Information on the Cautionary Notice in Afghanistan

As Cautionary Notice in Afghanistan is informal, there are also no regulations on the information listed in that notice.

However, like the application for patent registration in Afghanistan, the following basic information is still needed:

  • Full name and address of the applicant(s);
  • Full name and address of the inventor(s);
  • Softcopy of the specification;
  • Softcopy of the drawings;
  • Softcopy of the claims;
  • Softcopy of Abstract.

You can see a list of Afghanistan IP firms here.


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