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IPOPHL, KIPO agree to share patent work

Louella Desiderio (The Philippine Star) - May 8, 2014 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines - The Intellectual Property Office of the Philippines (IPOPHL) has forged a partnership with the Korean Intellectual Property Office (KIPO) to enable patent work sharing between the two countries.

Speaking at the Management Association of the Philippines CEO Academy Forum held yesterday, IPOPHL director general Ricardo Blancaflor said the memorandum of understanding signed last month would allow patent examinations conducted here to be recognized in South Korea and vice versa. 

“The agreement shows the country’s (South Korea) high level of confidence in patent protection in the Philippines,” he said.

Aside from KIPO, the IPOPHL has entered into similar agreements with the US Patent and Trademark Office as well as the Japan Patent Office.

While the IPOPHL has no immediate plans to sign similar deals with countries in Southeast Asia, Blancaflor said there are efforts to cooperate in IP protection in line with the regional integration.

He noted that the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) Working Group on IP Committee has a work plan for IP protection for the regional integration.

“With the ASEAN integration, we are moving towards harmonization of rules on IP enforcement,” he said.

The ASEAN aims to establish a single market economy with free movement of goods, services and investments by December 2015.

Earlier, Blancaflor said the IPOPHL intends to implement programs to increase the awareness of the public and improve the enforcement of IP rights.

The programs would be undertaken to ensure the country remains out of the US Trade Representative’s (USTR) Watch List.

The USTR announced late last month the Philippines has been removed from the Special 301 report Watch List amid legislative and regulatory reforms undertaken by the government to strengthen IP protection and enforcement.

The Philippines has been continuously placed either in the Priority Watch List or Watch List since 1994.

The Special 301 report is an annual review of the state of IP protection and enforcement of America’s trading partners.

ACADEMY FORUM ASSOCIATION OF SOUTHEAST ASIAN NATIONS BLANCAFLOR INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY OFFICE OF THE PHILIPPINES JAPAN PATENT OFFICE KOREAN INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY OFFICE MANAGEMENT ASSOCIATION OF THE PHILIPPINES PATENT AND TRADEMARK OFFICE SOUTH KOREA WATCH LIST
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