The Andean Community of Nations (CAN) — made up of Bolivia, Colombia, Ecuador, and Peru — has announced the launch of a database allowing searches of trademarks and brands registered across the sub-region, with the Andean Community trademark database the latest move to deepen integration.
Known as ‘CAN TMview,’ the database forms part of a European Union-backed scheme to develop more robust intellectual property (IP) protection, known as IP Key Latin America.
Currently, trademarks and brands registered in both Colombia and Peru can be found on the Andean Community trademark database, with those in Ecuador soon to be available, and Bolivia in the process of arranging its participation.
SEE ALSO: Incorporate a Company in Colombia: Everything You Need to Know
According to Andean Community Secretary-General Jorge Hernando Pedraza, the scheme is intended to promote regional cohesion and bring dividends not only to the populations of all four countries, but to stakeholders beyond the region.
“[CAN TMview] is part of the digital transformation process that we promote from our organization and that will make available to 111 million citizens, intellectual property offices, and the whole world, a unified and free search engine for Andean brands,” Pedraza was quoted as saying.
The benefits of the Andean Community trademark database were also promoted by Pedro Duarte, project leader for IP Key Latin America, who highlighted the use it would offer to small- and medium-sized businesses in the EU that are looking to invest in the region, as well as contributing to market integration in CAN.
“The objective is to continue improving the transparency, predictability and accessibility of intellectual property in the countries of the Andean Community, in addition to taking a step forward in the modernization of the practices of the offices in this matter towards a more friendly environment for the user,” Duarte was quoted as saying.
Andean Community trademark database a draw for businesses
The launch of the Andean Community trademark database is the latest move by this sub-regional bloc to deepen integration.
In August, CAN enacted a freedom of movement statute, which offers citizens of each of the members greater opportunities to migrate around the region.
Even before that was enacted, the Andean Community was considered to have the most developed human mobility regime outside of the European Union (EU).
The new statute followed years of efforts to improve mobility in the region and offers significant potential benefits to both citizens and businesses from the sub-region, with greater human mobility promising similar benefits to those experienced by workers and businesses in the EU.
The Andean Community trademark database further expands the attractiveness of doing business in one of its four member countries, with transparency and cohesion in protecting IP of particular interest to companies doing business in the sub-region.
Just as the freedom of movement statute makes doing business in more than one of the member states more attractive, so too does this latest integration initiative.
Andean Community trademark database latest integration effort
Established in 1969, the Andean Community originally included Chile — prior to its expulsion following a bloody coup and slide into military rule in the 1970s. That same decade, Venezuela joined, only to leave in 2006.
The Andean Community was originally established with the stated goal of establishing a common market similar to the European project, and to later establish free movement.
Subsequent initiatives saw greater freedom of movement introduced, before the most recent statute was enacted.
The new Andean Community trademark database also echoes an EU effort, with CAN TMview effectively a sub-regional version of a global IP transparency initiative known simply as TMview.
While the Andean Community trademark database is not yet fully functional, given the current absence of trademarks and brands registered in Bolivia and Ecuador, it promises to further incentivize foreign companies to do business in the region.
Biz Latin Hub can assist you doing business in Latin America
At Biz Latin Hub, we have teams of corporate support specialists based in 16 countries around Latin America and the Caribbean, including every member of the Andean Community.
We offer a comprehensive portfolio of back-office services, including company formation, accounting & taxation, legal services, visa processing, and hiring & PEO, meaning that we can provide tailored packages of integrated services to suit every need.
Given our unrivaled presence around Latin America and the Caribbean, we also specialise in multi-jurisdiction market entry in the region.
Contact us today to find out more about how we can support your business, or if you would like us to run a search of the Andean Community trademark database on your behalf.
You can also read about our team and expert authors.