INTA Continues Engagement in Asia-Pacific on Anticounterfeiting

Published: September 15, 2018

Asia-Pacific is a crucial region of focus for INTA with respect to the Association’s anticounterfeiting initiatives, as the region is a key source for manufacturing, origin, and transit of counterfeits. Over the summer, INTA participated in a number of initiatives, including policy dialogues with local enforcement authorities, meetings during delegation visits, and workshops and conferences addressing anticounterfeiting and criminal enforcement of intellectual property (IP) rights.

Engaging with Chinese Officials

INTA CEO Etienne Sanz de Acedo visited Beijing, China, in July, where he met with Chinese IP enforcement authorities, including the Beijing IP Court, China customs, and the Ministry of Public Security (MPS). INTA members and staff also took part in the Global Trade Development Week in Shanghai, the 2018 China Forum on Criminal IP Protection, and the 2018 China Forum on Criminal IP Protection in Suzhou, organized by the Quality Brands Protection Committee of the China Association of Enterprises with Foreign Investment (QBPC) and supported by IP Key China, a program directed by the European Commission and implemented by the European Union Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO).

Policy Dialogues

In July and August, INTA held policy dialogues in Manila, the Philippines, and in Bangkok, Thailand, engaging local customs officials on the topics of border measures, online counterfeits, and small parcel consignments. These are topics of concern for INTA members globally, and INTA has developed best practice papers to support the dialogue and discussion among members, local authorities, and other key players, as well as to support INTA’s advocacy efforts on domestic legislation.

Meeting with Singapore Customs

INTA’s engagement with customs officials also included a delegation of Anticounterfeiting Committee brand owner and IP practitioner representatives, including INTA President-elect David Lossignol (
Sandoz International GmbH, Germany). They met with Singapore Customs in early September to discuss the amendments to the new Intellectual Property (Border Enforcement) Bill passed on July 9, 2018, in relation to seizures on exported good from Singapore upon the rights holder’s request, and cooperation between brand owners and customs to share information relating to the seizure or detainment of infringing goods. Possible cooperation or support that INTA may offer to facilitate smooth implementation of the bill and to reach out to brand owners in relation to the new changes, as well as the provision of product identification trainings, were proposed and discussed during the meeting.

Growth in ASEAN

INTA also prioritizes IP enforcement‒related initiatives at the regional level, and in August participated in the third meeting of the ASEAN Network of IPR Enforcement Experts (ANIEE) as a resource for a consultation session chaired by the Director General of the Intellectual Property Office of the Philippines, Josephine Santiago. INTA’s membership presence in ASEAN is continuously growing, making ASEAN a very important region to monitor and to build cooperation and partnerships, especially in relation to anticounterfeiting matters. INTA is aware and supportive of the important role of IP offices in IP rights enforcement worldwide, and especially for IP office directors from the Asia region, where there are increasing challenges due to increased trade opportunities.

INTA is also vigorously advocating for effective enforcement mechanisms in various jurisdictions. As ANIEE meetings focus on facilitating the cooperation between enforcement focal points from nine ASEAN member states to discuss measures to carry out the regional Action Plan on IPR Enforcement, including coordination mechanisms to enhance enforcement operations in the region, INTA welcomed this opportunity to participate as a resource for the first time. The Association would like to engage with ANIEE on a more regular basis. Ongoing discussions between the enforcement officials and stakeholders represented by INTA can lead to further cooperation and exchange of ideas and best practices on trademark and anticounterfeiting policies and enforcement.

Conference Participation Across the Region

In the months of July and August, INTA also participated in various conferences and workshops organized by partner organizations to bring the voice of its members to such forums and raise awareness of the importance of jointly combating counterfeits. In late July, INTA participated in the Inno Trade Security Summit in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. The Association also participated in August in the Workshop on Criminal Enforcement Against Online Trade in Pirated Content and Counterfeit Goods organized by the United States Patent and Trademark Office’s Global Intellectual Property Academy and the ASEAN Secretariat, with support from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, U.S. Department of Homeland Security, U.S. Department of Justice, U.S. Department of State Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs (INL) Office, and IP Key Southeast Asia funded by the European Union and implemented by the European Union Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO). The three-day workshop took place in Bangkok, Thailand, and brought government representatives and the private sector together to discuss legislation, practical challenges, investigation, intelligence, evidence collection, coordination, and capacity building. INTA contributed by bringing its members’ experience on the topic of the challenges for consumers and rights holders in the global and online environment.

INTA will continue focusing its efforts in Asia-Pacific through upcoming initiatives in Australia, Indonesia, South-Korea, and Hong Kong in the next quarter, with a focus on anticounterfeiting and trademark protection and enforcement.

INTA’s Asia Pacific Representative Office, based in Singapore, represents the Association’s 815 members across the region. Working in collaboration with staff at INTA’s headquarters in New York City, the Asia Pacific Representative Office leads the Association’s policy, membership, marketing, and communications initiatives throughout this region. To learn more about INTA’s activities in the Asia Pacific, please contact INTA Chief Representative Officer Seth Hays at [email protected].

Although every effort has been made to verify the accuracy of items in the INTA Bulletin, readers are urged to check independently on matters of specific concern or interest. Law & Practice updates are published without comment from INTA except where it has taken an official position.

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