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The Philippines to Accelerate Digital IP Goals

Image credits: ipophil.gov.ph

The director general of the Intellectual Property (IP) Office of the Philippines (IPOPHL), Rowel S. Barba, called for more support to maximise the benefits of IP in establishing a cohesive digital economy during the recently held 63rd Assemblies of the Member States of the World Intellectual Property Organisation (WIPO).

“We underscore the importance of strengthening the ASEAN IP systems through digital transformation and are working closely with all stakeholders to accelerate these changes in response to the call at the 53rd ASEAN Economic Minister Meeting in 2021,” says Director General Rowel, who is also the chair of the ASEAN Working Group on IP Cooperation (AWGIPC).

The fourth industrial revolution, the digital economy, and even the economic recovery have all been addressed in initiatives and mid-term plan frameworks by numerous ASEAN sectoral groups, he continued.

These strategic plans’ IP clauses demonstrate how highly IP is regarded for encouraging a creative and inventive culture in the digital world. Along with these regional initiatives for digitalisation, the AWGIPC will lead efforts to enhance the ASEAN IP Portal in support of the ASEAN cross-pillar digital activities.

These strategy documents are:

  • ASEAN Digital Integration Index (ADII)
  • ASEAN Digital Integration Framework Action Plan (DIFAP)
  • ASEAN Agreement on Electronic Commerce
  • Consolidated Strategy of the Fourth Industrial Revolution (4IR)
  • ASEAN Innovation Roadmap
  • ASEAN Comprehensive Recovery Framework

The ASEAN member states have the option of modernising the 1995 ASEAN Framework Agreement for Intellectual Property Cooperation (AFAIPC) into a “modern, up-to-date, forward-looking agreement, relevant to industry and more responsive to regional and global changes.”

The WIPO-ASEAN Regional Technical Cooperation Implementation and Monitoring Plan for Intellectual Property (RTCIP) 2019–2025 is one illustration. The RTCIP functions well as a framework for tracking WIPO’s actions connected to ASEAN objectives because it covers 37 deliverables as part of the ASEAN’s IP Rights Action Plan 2016–2025.

The IPOPHL is looking forward to better engagement with WIPO and its member states to achieve the goal of accelerating the completion of deliverables under the ASEAN IPR Action Plan 2016-2025, with 75 per cent of the deliverables completed by March 2023. The agency has also acknowledged the WIPO’s Singapore Office and Division for Asia and the Pacific (WSO).

WSO has continually supported the ASEAN region through its capacity-building programmes for ASEAN IP offices, its online IP courses made available to ASEAN businesses, and its collaboration with IP practitioners and dialogue partners that provide technical assistance on IP in the region.

In the meantime, the agency has partnered with extensive research being undertaken by the Korean Institute of Patent Information (KIPI) to further automate the IPOPHL services. The study will provide recommendations for a medium- to long-term plan for IPOPHL to automate the operations that are identified.

To provide a value-added information infrastructure for Korea’s intellectual property, the Korean Intellectual Property Office (KIPO) established a related public institute known as KIPI. It is a specialist non-profit organisation that provides information on industrial property rights.

The most recent cooperation with KIPI helps IPOPHL implement its six-point BRIGHT Agenda. This shows how crucial partnerships are to future-proofing the agency’s services, especially as the country continues to support stakeholders in maximising the IP system for their pandemic recovery.

In November 2022, the IP automation consulting project between IPOPHL and KIPI will be finished, with the possibility of continuing cooperation with the Korean government.

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