Russia has joined the Hague Agreement.
On November 30, 2017, the Government of the Russian Federation deposited its instrument of ratification of the Hague Agreement with WIPO’s Director General Francis Gurry. The Hague Agreement will thus enter into force in the Russian Federation on February 28, 2018.
I blogged a few weeks ago that Russia was on track to join Hague Agreement. With today’s news, Russia thus accomplishes the trifecta — membership in all three major intellectual property filing systems — utility patent (PCT, joined March 29, 1978), trademark (Madrid, joined July 1, 1976), and industrial design (Hague).
As of February 28, 2018, companies and designers from Russia can begin using the Hague System to protect their industrial designs. The applicant can pursue protection in the territories of up to 82 countries through a single international application and a single set of fees.
Likewise from February 28, 2018, those located outside of Russia will be able to seek design protection in Russia through the Hague System.
Other countries that are likely to join Hague Agreement soon include:
- United Kingdom (already belongs to PCT and Madrid)
- China (already belongs to PCT and Madrid)
- Mexico (already belongs to PCT and Madrid)
- Israel (already belongs to PCT and Madrid)
- Vietnam (already belongs to PCT and Madrid)
- Canada (already belongs to PCT)
For the UK, China, Mexico, Israel, and Vietnam the accession to Hague will also complete the trifecta.
This is all good news for the Hague Agreement and for industrial design generally.