October 23, 2020

Newly implemented international cooperations

This year has shown that above anything else, remaining connected in an uncertain time is vital for sectors to thrive, and IP law is no different. Cooperations between various countries have been implemented in recent months, aiming to provide a more cohesive and efficient IP system which is set to benefit those filing for and maintaining their IP rights.

The intellectual property offices of Denmark and India are among those enforcing new collaborative initiatives. On September 26, 2020, the two countries signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) aiming to improve the rights of intellectual property holders and encourage innovation. In order to facilitate this, a joint committee has been formed which will provide an exchange of knowledge in relation to best practices and IP awareness, with a specific focus on sustainable development and job creation.

The two countries will be creating and hosting programmes and events which aim to aid small and medium enterprises, universities, and other organisations to enhance their IP protection. The MoU is also hoped to introduce joint training programmes, education, and the development of modernisation IP projects. The MoU is set to be valid for 4 years, however this may be renewed on a rolling basis.

Japan and Malaysia have also solidified collaborations, having implemented a full version of the PPH program in conjunction with one another. The Japanese Patent Office (JPO) and the Intellectual Property Corporation of Malaysia (MyIPO) first initiated the PPH pilot program on October 1, 2014. The program was a great success, therefore the two offices agreed to enforce their collaborative PPH permanently 6 years later, as of October 1, 2020. As the pilot version of the program was already enforced, there will be no changes in regard to implementing the full highway.

Building upon an existing cooperation, the Intellectual Property Office of the European Union (EUIPO) and the Eurasian Patent Office held their annual meeting online on October 2, 2020. A collaboration between the two was initially convened as per the ratification of the Protocol on the Protection of Industrial Designs to the Eurasian Patent Convention (EAPC), and has allowed them to jointly enhance their IP sphere.

The conference allowed both offices to discuss the ongoing process of the cooperation, which was initially formed to facilitate the exchange of information in relation to developments within the industrial design field. Furthermore, the two offices have agreed to extend their initial pilot PPH program, which will now be available indefinitely as of October 1, 2020. The pilot version of the PPH was established through an MoU signed by the offices on April 27, 2017.

With the ongoing process of modernisation in the IP sphere, these countries are prime examples of what can be achieved when working collaboratively. The cooperations are set to encourage further filings across the spectrum of IP rights protection, with applicants experiencing a more efficient and streamlined approach as IP offices remain committed to providing excellent service.

Author: Danielle Carvey