ENSafrica: Tanzania

Tanzania
Dar es Salaam offices
Rex House
145 Magore Street, Upanga
Dar es Salaam
show directions from airport


po box 7495
Dar es Salaam
tel: +255 22 211 4899
fax: +255 22 211 2830/9474
email - info@ENSafrica.com
website - view country page

ENSyclopedia: Tanzania

The United Republic of Tanzania was formed jointly by the Mainland Tanzania (former Tanganyika) and the semi-independent Zanzibar Island in 1964. Although Mainland Tanzania and Zanzibar Island (Zanzibar) are united in many areas, industrial property legislation is not a union matter. Each country has its own local industrial property legislation.

International Conventions, Treaties and Arrangements

Paris Convention - From16 June 1963;

The Harare Protocol,- From 1 September 1999;

WIPO, - From 30 December 1983;

Nice Union- From 14 September 1999;

TRIPS - From 1994

Laws

  • The Trade and Service Marks Act, 1986 and
  • Trade and Service Marks Regulations, 2000.

Classification

The International Classification of goods and services applies.  A separate application is required for each class of goods and/or services.

Categories of Trade Marks

Provision is made for:

  • Service marks
  • Series marks
  • Colour or combination of colours marks
  • Associated marks
  • Certification marks
  • Three-dimensional marks, upon providing proof of registration from other countries
  • Collective marks

Filing requirements

  • Name, address and occupation of the applicant.
  • Payment of official fee.
  • Simply signed Power of Attorney.
  • 10 prints of the mark, except for word marks in ordinary type.
  • Priority document (if applicable), with verified English translation.
  • A verified English translation, if the proposed trademark is in language other than English.
  • Specification of the goods and services for which registration is to be registered in accordance to NICE classification current edition.

Procedure

  • Applications are examined as to formalities, inherent registrability and conflict with prior existing registrations/applications.  Accepted applications are advertised

Oppositions

  • Opposition may be lodged within 60 days following the date of advertisement of the trade mark application.
  • Extension of the opposition period is possible at the discretion of the Registrar.

Use

  • Registration may be cancelled on application by an aggrieved person on the ground that one month prior to the filing  of the application a continuous period of three years or longer had elapsed during which the registered proprietor did not use the mark.1
  • Permitted use by a third party cannot be relied on by the proprietor unless the user is recorded as a licensee/registered user.

Well known Marks

Marks are not registrable if they constitute reproductions, imitations, translations or transcriptions liable to cause confusion of trade or service marks and business or company names which are well-known in the country and belong to third parties.

Duration and Renewal

  • A trade mark registration is effective for an initial period of seven years from the filing date, thereafter, renewable for further periods of ten years.
  • Upon renewal, registrant must submit a statement confirming use of the trade mark within the three years preceding the renewal.

Licensing/Registered Users

  • Licensing is recognised.  Recordation is required in order to be effective against third parties and for use by the licensee to inure to the benefit of the registered proprietor.

The license agreement must provide for quality control by the licensor

Assignment

A mark may be assigned in whole or in part. Assignments may be made with or without goodwill, and must be registered in order to be effective as against third parties.

The requirements for the recordal of an assignment and transmission are the following:

  • Assignment document or a confirmatory deed of assignment, signed by the assignor and the assignee.
  • Power of attorney.
  • Evidence of assignment of a priority claim, if the application is based on a priority claim.

Marking

   Marking is optional and may consist of the words “Registered Trade Mark” or suitable abbreviation such as “Regd. Tm.” or the symbol ®.

  The trademark owner can bring legal action against any persons who deceptively use the mark. And there are penal sanctions for intentional infringement of a trademark.


Although (mainland) Tanganyika and (offshore) Zanzibar are united politically to form the Republic of Tanzania, they are treated separately for registration purposes, and separate applications are required.

International Conventions, Treaties and Arrangements

Conventions

Paris Union – From 16 June 1963;

 PCT, - From 14 September 1999;

WIPO,  - From 30 December 1983;

ARIPO, - From 1 September 1999;

TRIPS, - From 1994.

Laws

  • Patents Act (Chapter 217 of the Laws of Tanzania),;
  • Patents Regulations (Government Notice No. 190 of 1994).

Types of Patents Available

  • Patents of Invention
  • National Phase PCT application
  • ARIPO application
  • ARIPO Regional Phase PCT application \

Patentable Subject Matter

An invention is patentable if it is new, involves an inventive step and is industrially applicable. Diagnostic, therapeutic and surgical methods for the treatment of humans and animals are not patentable. However products for use in any such methods may be patented.

Novelty Requirement

Absolute novelty is required. A grace period of six months before the application date or the priority date is provided if the disclosure occurred by display of the invention at an official or officially recognized international exhibition, or an evident abuse in relation to the applicant or his predecessor in title.

Filing Requirements

National Phase PCT Application

  • Power of Attorney (simply signed) (can be late filed, no set deadline)
  • Specification, claims and abstract in English (required on the day of filing)
  • Formal drawings, if applicable (required on the day of filing)
  • International Patent Classification (can be late filed, no set deadline)
  • Assignment of Invention (can be late filed, no set deadline)
  • Copy of Published International Application (required on the day of filing)
  • Copy of International Search Report (can be late filed, no set deadline)
  • Copy of International Preliminary Report on Patentability (can be late filed, no set deadline)

Patents of Invention (Non-PCT)

  • Power of Attorney (simply signed) (can be late filed, no set deadline)
  • Specification, claims and abstract in English (required on the day of filing)
  • Formal drawings, if applicable (required on the day of filing)
  • International Patent Classification (can be late filed, no set deadline)
  • Assignment of Invention (can be late filed, no set deadline)
  • Priority document with verified English translation (can be late filed within three months)

ARIPO application in which Tanzania is designated

Please see ARIPO

ARIPO Regional Phase PCT Application

Please see ARIPO

Duration

The term of a patent is ten years from the filing date. However the term can be extended for two further periods of five years each subject to the payment of annual fees. The term of an ARIPO patent in Tanzania is twenty years from the date of filing.

Renewal

Renewal fees fall due annually commencing on the first anniversary of the filing date


The information below is at 1 September 2012. Competition Law in Africa is in a state of rapid development and hence may change very quickly.  Entities conducting business in Africa should contact the ENS competition law department for further advice before proceeding.

jurisdiction

merger control

cartel regulation

dominance regulation

penalties

COMESA member

pre-implementation

post-implementation

Tanzania

X


International Conventions, Treaties and Arrangements

Classification

International classification of goods and services applies.

Categories of Trade Marks

Provision is made for:

  • Service marks
  • Collective marks
  • Certification marks

Filing requirements

Power of attorney, simply signed.

Ten prints of the trade mark (device marks)

Procedure

The application may be filed directly with the ARIPO office or with the trade mark office of a member state.

Applications are examined as to formal requirements.

Oppositions

Provisions of the national laws of the member country apply.

Use

Provisions of the national laws of the member country apply.

Duration and Renewal

A trade mark registration is effective for an initial period of ten years and, thereafter, renewable for further periods of ten years.

Licensing/Registered Users

Provisions of the national laws of the member country apply.

Assignment

Provisions of the national laws of the member country apply.

Marking

Provisions of the national laws of the member country apply.


International Conventions, Treaties and Arrangements

PCT

Paris Convention

Types of Patents Available

  • Patents of Invention
  • ARIPO Regional Phase PCT Applications

Patentable Subject Matter

An invention is patentable if it is new, involves an inventive step, is industrially applicable or is a new use. The following are not patentable:

  • Inventions that are not patentable in a member State where protection is sought cannot be protected in that State

Novelty Requirements

An invention is new if it has not been made available anywhere in the world by means of written disclosure or by use or exhibition, before the filing date of the ARIPO application or priority date. Novelty may not be destroyed if disclosure is made at an official or recognised exhibition:

  • Provided the application is filed within six months following the date of exhibition.

Filing requirements: National Phase PCT Application

  • Power of Attorney (simply signed)
  • Specifications, claims and abstract in English
  • Formal drawings, if applicable
  • International Patent Classification
  • Copy of PCT International Publication
  • Copy of International Search Report
  • Copy of International Preliminary Examination Report 

Filing requirements: Patents of Invention (Non-PCT)

  • Power of Attorney (simply signed)
  • Specifications, claims and abstract in English
  • Formal drawings, if applicable
  • International Patent Classification
  • Assignment of Invention
  • Priority Document with verified English translation

Examination

An application remains pending for several years. Substantive examination takes place automatically and a substantive examination report is issued. The applicant is given a period to comply with any objections raised, failing which the application is refused. If the examination is favourable or has passed the objections phase, each member State is notified of ARIPO’s decision to grant the patent. 

Duration

ARIPO Protocol amended to twenty years from filing date. However some national legislation not yet in line and thus position unclear.

Extensions and Supplementary Protection certificates (if applicable) 

Renewal

Renewal fees are payable annually on the anniversary of the filing date.


Fraud Awareness Training

Trained law enforcement officials in Tanzania on anti-corruption methodologies, fraud investigation and investigative techniques.


Based on the English Common Law system.
  • Company limited by shares (Private or Public);
  • Company limited by guarantee (Private or Public);
  • Unlimited company (Private or Public);
  • Branch of a foreign company;
  • Agency Contracts
  • Partnership/limited liability partnerships;
  • Cooperative Societies;
  • Trusts.

Local Shareholding, Management

There are no formal requirements on minimum local participation in either equity or management except in certain sectors (such as telecommunications).

The telecommunications sector requires companies to have a Tanzanian shareholding of at least 35% Other than this restriction, foreigners are free to own land in Tanzania.

Employment Requirements

Non-citizens working in Tanzania require a work permit.


Importation and exportation:

  • There is no general importation or exportation licence.  However importation of certain goods may require approval from relevant Authority/Ministry prior to importation.

Other Registrations/ licences:

  • Tanzania Chamber of Commerce, Industry and Agriculture (“TCCIA”)
  • Tanzania Revenue Authorities (TRA) – Tax PIN and Import license
  • Tanzania Investment Centre – Certificate of Incentives
  • Ministry of Industries and Trade – Business / Commercial license
  • Statutory National Social Security Fund (NSSF)

A foreign investor who intends to invest in Tanzania is entitled to apply to the Tanzanian Investment Centre (TIC) for an investment certificate if, inter alia, the amount to be invested by the foreign investor is at least US$300.000 or the equivalent in any currency.

A business enterprise in respect of which a certificate is granted under the Act is entitled to the benefits which are applicable to that enterprise under the provisions of the Income Tax Act, the Customs Tariff Act, the VAT Act or of any other written law for the time being in force.

Certificate of incentives guarantees:

  • against expropriation;
  • fiscal stability for a 5 year period i.e. protection against adverse changes in taxation legislation;
  • the right to transfer outside the country 100% of foreign exchange earned, profits and capital;
  • automatic permission during the start-up period to employ 5 foreign nationals on the project holding certificates of incentives;
  • assistance in processing of registration, permits and licenses by various Government agencies and in resolving any areas of difference with such agencies; and
  • assistance with allocation of land and issue of derivative titles.

Tanzania has Bilateral Investment Treaties with Canada, Denmark, Finland, Germany, Italy, Netherlands, Sweden, Switzerland United Kingdom.


Foreign exchange is regulated under the Foreign Exchange Act 1992.

Under the Act, any person, whether resident in Tanzania or not, may:

  • hold any amount of foreign currency;
  • sell any amount of specified foreign currency to an authorized dealer or bureau de change; and
  • open and maintain a foreign-currency account with a bank which is an authorized dealer.

  • World Trade Organization (WTO);
  • ACP-EU Partnership Agreement;
  • East African Community (EAC), Tanzania is consequently a member of the East African Customs Union; and
  • Southern African Development Community (SADC).

1.1. Tax System

A Tanzanian resident is taxed on worldwide income, irrespective of source. Non-residents are taxable on income with a source in Tanzania.

1.2. Corporate Residence

A company is tax resident if it is incorporated or formed under the laws of Tanzania or if the management and control of its affairs is exercised in Tanzania.

1.3. Corporate Tax Rate

The corporate tax rate applicable to resident companies is 30%. A reduced corporate tax rate of 25% applies for three consecutive years for companies newly listed on the Dar es Salaam Stock Exchange (DSE). To qualify, at least 30% of the company's shares must be issued to the public.

1.4. Capital Gains Tax Rate

There is no specific capital gains tax.  Gains derived on the realisation of most assets (and liabilities) will be included (or losses deducted) as part of normal income and subject to the standard corporate tax rate of 30%.

1.5. Withholding Taxes (WHT)

WHT Rate (%)

Residents

Non-residents

Branch profits

-

10%

Dividends

5% (listed companies)
5% (at least 25% shareholder)
10 % (other Dividend)

0% (export processing zones);
5% (listed companies);
10% (other)

Interest

10%

10% (bank deposits);
0% (if paid by strategic investors to a non-resident bank)

Royalties

15%

15%

Service Fee

5%

5%

1.6. Losses

There is no limit on the carry forward period for tax losses. However, tax losses in certain circumstances are ring-fenced.

1.7. Transfer pricing

Transfer pricing rules are in place in Tanzania.

1.8. Thin capitalisation

Thin capitalisation rules are in place in Tanzania.

1.9. Group treatment

There is no group treatment in Tanzania.

1.10. Double Tax Agreements (DTA)

Tanzania has DTAs in force with Canada, Denmark, Finland, Italy, India, Norway, Sweden, South Africa and Zambia.

1.11. Employees’ Tax

The top marginal rate of tax for resident individuals is 30%.

Non-resident individuals are subject to tax at a rate of 15% on employment income.

Employers and employees are obligated to contribute to the National Social Security Fund (NSSF). The employer’s contribution is 20% of the employee’s remuneration, however the employer can recover up to 10% from employee.

1.12. Value Added Tax Rate (VAT)

The standard rate of VAT is 18%, but the export of goods and certain services is eligible for zero rating.


 

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