How to Set Up Business in JapanSection 5. Trademark and Design Protection Systems
5.6 International registration of trademarks

In principle, to obtain trademark rights in Japan from within a foreign country, an application for registration must be filed with the Japan Patent Office. However, the following two schemes may be preferable alternatives.

5.6.1 Application under the Paris Convention

If you intend to apply for registration of a trademark in Japan only, or in a small number of countries, it may be a good idea to file your application under the Paris Convention.

5.6.2 Application under the Madrid Agreement

Japan is also a signatory to the Madrid agreement, so this is another alternative when making an international trademark application that includes Japan. Under this system, it is possible to file an international application and register trademarks in specified countries based on the application you initially filed in your own country. This is a particularly handy system for conglomerate companies with interests in many countries around the world.