Designs and Models

– Law No. 4/2001 of December 31, 2001.
– Decree-Law No. 23/2016 of February 9, 2017.

Membership in International Conventions

– Convention Establishing the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO), since May 12, 1998.
– Paris Convention for the Protection of Industrial Property, Stockholm Act, since May 12, 1998.
– The Hague Convention Abolishing the Requirement of Legalization for Foreign Public Documents (Apostille), since September 13, 2008.
– Hague Agreement Concerning the International Registration of Industrial Designs, Geneva Act, since December 8, 2008.
– ARIPO, Harare Protocol on Patents and Industrial Designs, since August 19, 2014.


Definition: any assembly of lines, colors or any other three-dimensional form associated or not to lines or colors, provided this assembly or form imparts a particular appearance to an industrial product or artifact. 

Applicant: the author or his successor in any title. 

Novelty: having not been disclosed within the country or abroad by any publication in tangible form or used by any other means, before the date of the filing of the application.

Filing requirements for an application (to be sent to resident agent):
1. Drawings, photographs or graphical representations of the design or the model;
2. If the applicant is not the author, an assignment or a declaration which justifies the applicant’s right.


Examination: according to the law, the Industrial Property Administration Body should examine the application as to the substantial requirements.

Publication and registration: a notice is published in the Industrial Property Gazette.


Duration: five years from the date of application, renewable for two more consecutive periods of five years.

Rights conferred by the registration: (1) the exploitation of an industrial design or model registered in São Tomé e Príncipe by any person other than the owner of the registration requires a written consent; (2) a registered industrial design or model confers to its owner the right to hinder a third party, without his consent, from producing, manufacturing, selling or exploiting the subject matter thereof; (3) the owner of a registration of an industrial design or model moreover enjoys the capacity to bring a judicial action against any person who commits a counterfeiting of the design or model or who executes without his consent any preparatory acts in that sense

Revocation of the registration: (1) any interested party may request the court to revoke a registration of an industrial design or model; (2) the court shall order the revocation of the application if the applicant can prove that one of the conditions foreseen in the present statute is not fulfilled or if the owner of the industrial design or model has not been the inventor or his successor.