A TRADEMARK  is a sign or word used, or intended to be used, to distinguish goods or services dealt with or provided in the course of trade by a person from goods or services dealt with or provided in the course of trade by another person. (Trademark Act)


Brand - is a marketing tool that can create a living pleasant memory on the consumer.  It sums up all experiences that consumer associated with that product as well.  Stories that mothers in the islands (consumers), tells about the healing and suiting effect of Mama Joy for babies is the BRAND of Mama Joy.

Trademark - is the legal identity of your brand usually comes with brand name, formula to produce product or something that is patented.  It gives legal protection to your product in the market. 


  1. You are legally own the mark.
  2. You can pursue legal action against infringers.
  3. Your trademark will appear in searches locally, regionally, and internally.
  4. Prevent against imported goods with similar confusing mark.
  5. Easier path to international rights.


Protection period of each of Trademark registered is 10 years. 

To avoid IP infringing within Vanuatu border, businesses in Vanuatu need to ensure that they have recognize distributor certificate or contract from the identify brand or trademark.


Choose a mark (figurative or word) that is distinctive for your product. You can do it by yourself or consult the trademark section at VanIPO for assistance.

5 Categories of Distinctiveness

Generic Mark Descriptive Mark Suggestive Mark Arbitrary Mark Fanciful Mark
A common term that fails to distinguish one product source from another. Words that reflect the nature, quality, or contents of a product. A word or phrase that hints at a product attribute. A common word used in an unrelated context. Wholly invented sign, symbol, word, or phrase.
Water, elevator, aspirin, beer
Not protectable Protectable only with Secondary meaning Generally protectable Almost always protectable Most Protectable
  • Do not choose a term that is considered generic as your trademark. For example, Coconut Virgin Oil or Manaro Virgin Oil. Generic terms are not protectable.
  • You may choose a descriptive mark. But the rule is that descriptive marks, geographic terms, and personal names must have an established secondary meaning in consumers' minds in order for approval to be granted.
  • You can have suggestive and arbitrary marks. They are considered inherently distinctive with their eligibility being determined by whoever is first to register or first to use.
  • We recommend people to come up with fanciful marks. A fanciful mark is the strongest protectable marks.