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Paris Convention for the Protection of Industrial Property

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Citation Edit

Paris Convention for the Protection of Industrial Property (March 20, 1883; effective July 7, 1884, and amended June 2, 1934 and July 14, 1967) (the Paris Convention) (full-text).

Introduction Edit

The "Paris Convention" is an important and one of the first intellectual property treaties. As a result of this treaty, intellectual property systems, including patents, of any contracting state are accessible to the nationals of other states party to the Convention.

The "Convention priority right" (also called "Paris Convention priority right" or "Union priority right") is also established by this treaty: it provides that an applicant from one contracting State shall be able to use its first filing date (in one of the contracting State) as the effective filing date in another contracting State, provided that he files another application within six (6) months (for industrial designs and trademarks) or twelve (12) months (for patents and utility models) from the first filing.

History Edit

After a diplomatic conference in Paris in 1880, the Convention was signed in 1883 by 11 countries: Belgium, Brazil, France, Guatemala, Italy, the Netherlands, Portugal, El Salvador, Serbia, Spain and Switzerland.

The Treaty was revised at Brussels, on December 14, 1900, at Washington, D.C., on June 2, 1911, at The Hague, on November 6, 1925, at London, on June 2, 1934, at Lisbon, on October 31, 1958, and at Stockholm, on July 14, 1967, and was amended on September 28, 1979.

Contracting parties Edit

The Convention now has 171 contracting member countries, [1] which makes it one of the most widely adopted treaties worldwide. Notably, Taiwan and Kuwait are not parties to the Convention. However, according to Article 27 of its Patent Act, Taiwan will recognize priority claims from contracting members.

Contracting members include: Albania; Algeria; Andorra; Antigua and Barbuda; Argentina; Armenia; Australia; Austria; Azerbaijan; Bahamas; Bahrain; Bangladesh; Barbados; Belarus; Belgium; Belize; Benin; Bhutan; Bolivia; Bosnia and Herzegovina; Botswana; Brazil; Bulgaria; Burkina Faso; Burundi; Cambodia; Cameroon; Canada; Central African Republic; Chad; Chile; China; Colombia; Comoros; Congo; Costa Rica; Croatia; Cuba; Cyprus; Czech Republic; Côte d'Ivoire; Democratic People's Republic of Korea; Democratic Republic of the Congo; Denmark; Djibouti; Dominica; Dominican Republic; Ecuador; Egypt; El Salvador; Equatorial Guinea; Estonia; Finland; France; Gabon; Gambia; Georgia; Germany; Ghana; Greece; Grenada; Guatemala; Guinea; Guinea-Bissau; Guyana; Haiti; Holy See; Honduras; Hungary; Iceland; India; Indonesia; Iran; Iraq; Ireland; Israel; Italy; Jamaica; Japan; Jordan; Kazakhstan; Kenya; Kyrgyzstan; Laos; Latvia; Lebanon; Lesotho; Liberia; Libya; Liechtenstein; Lithuania; Luxembourg; Madagascar; Malawi; Malaysia; Mali; Malta; Mauritania; Mauritius; Mexico; Monaco; Mongolia; Morocco; Mozambique; Namibia; Nepal; The Netherlands; New Zealand; Nicaragua; Niger; Nigeria; Norway; Oman; Pakistan; Panama; Papua New Guinea; Paraguay; Peru; Philippines; Poland; Portugal; Qatar; Republic of Korea; Republic of Moldova; Romania; Russian Federation; Rwanda; Saint Kitts and Nevis; Saint Lucia; Saint Vincent and the Grenadines; San Marino; Sao Tome and Principe; Saudi Arabia; Senegal; Serbia; Seychelles; Sierra Leone; Singapore; Slovakia; Slovenia; South Africa; Spain; Sri Lanka; Sudan; Suriname; Swaziland; Sweden; Switzerland; Syrian Arab Republic; Tajikistan; The former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia; Togo; Tonga; Trinidad and Tobago; Tunisia; Turkey; Turkmenistan; Uganda; Ukraine; United Arab Emirates; United Kingdom; United Republic of Tanzania; United States of America; Uruguay; Uzbekistan; Venezuela; Vietnam; Yemen; Zambia; and Zimbabwe.

Administration Edit

The Paris Convention is administered by the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) [1] based in Geneva, Switzerland. [2].


  1. World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) web site, Contracting Parties, Contracting Parties > Paris Convention (Total Contracting Parties: 175).

External resourcesEdit

  • Haberman v Comptroller: an interesting and well-written UK court decision that helps to understand the concept of priority.

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