The Impact of Registration of a Single Color as a Trademark on Unfair Competition

A Comparative Study


The application for registration of non-traditional signs as trademarks has been increasing over the last two decades. “Single Color” is one of those non-traditional signs which has been applied for, especially in the U.K and U.S.A. Similarly, the Iraqi Trademark Law has allowed registration of colors as a trademark. However, the case law argues whether a single color may satisfy the requirements for registration of a trademark. On the other hand, the risks of color exhaustion and the anticompetitive effects of color monopolies are the main concerns on allowing the registration of single color trademarks. Therefore, protection of such trademarks from unfair competition might be difficult.


Legislations and Treaties:
The Agreement on Trade Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS) 1995.
The UK Trademarks Act 1994.
The Iraqi Trademark and Geographical Indications Law No. 21 of 1957 (as Amended in 2004).
The Iraqi Competition and Monopoly Prevention Law No. 14 of 2010.
The Iraqi Consumer Protection Law No. 1 of 2010.
The Iraqi Trade Law No. 149 of 1970 (revoked).
The Iraqi Trade Law No. 30 of 1984.
Directive (2008/95/EC). The Laws of the Member States Relating To Trademarks. L 299/25.
Council Regulation (EC) No. 207/2009 on the Community Trademark. L78/1.
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Research Papers:
Lara Adil Jabar. (2017). Competition Protection in Telecommunications sector. Master Thesis presented to College of Law, University of Sulaimani, Kurdistan Region of Iraq.
How to Cite
AHMAD, Awara Azad. The Impact of Registration of a Single Color as a Trademark on Unfair Competition. Journal of University of Human Development, [S.l.], v. 6, n. 1, p. 27-34, feb. 2020. ISSN 2411-7765. Available at: <>. Date accessed: 13 july 2020. doi: