Circular No. 366: All ARIPO Member States to be Members of the PCT

ARIPO (African Regional Industrial Property Organisation) provides inter alia a regional patent filing system in Africa.

Botswana has been a member of the ARIPO protocol on patents since 1985 and is currently the only member state which is not also a member of the Patent Cooperation Treaty (PCT). As a result, if protection is required in Botswana via the ARIPO route, the ARIPO patent application must be filed within the 12 month Paris Convention period. We are happy to advise that with effect from 30 October 2003, Botswana will become a member of the PCT. Consequently, after 30 October 2003, an ARIPO regional designation in a PCT application will include Botswana, and patent protection in Botswana may thereafter be obtained via the ARIPO regional phase of that PCT application.

Membership of ARIPO is open to all member states of the United National Economic Commission for Africa. At the present time there are 14 states that may be designated in an ARIPO patent application, namely: Botswana, Gambia, Ghana, Kenya, Lesotho, Malawi, Mozambique, Sierra Leone, Sudan, Swaziland, Tanzania (Tanganyika), Uganda, Zambia and Zimbabwe.

An ARIPO application and subsequent patent is a convenient and cost-effective way of obtaining patent protection in a large number of countries in Africa. You will see from our schedule of ARIPO fees below that the basic filing cost, including the designation of all ARIPO states, is less than USD3000.00. The ARIPO system is cost-effective because costs are reduced as processing, publication, grant and renewals are all managed by the ARIPO Office. Furthermore, the ARIPO Office conducts an examination and thus, when the application proceeds to grant, there is a strong presumption of validity of the ARIPO patent.

For more detailed information on ARIPO, the member states, and information on patents throughout Africa, please visit our website at Select the "filing requirement and forms for Africa" menu on the left-hand side of the page. By clicking on our interactive map of Africa or on a list of countries alongside the map, you will be able to access filing information and documents for ARIPO, or for any other African country in which you are interested.

Click here for ARIPO Trade Mark Filing Requirements.

Click here for PCT Filing Requirements.

If you need any further information please contact us by e-mail at or

by telefax to + 44 153 4838 001.

Spoor & Fisher Jersey ARIPO Fees

Date published: 2003/09/01
Author: Spoor & Fisher

Tags: circular no 366 aripo pct patents membership