AIPPI ASEAN First Regional Meeting in Kuala Lumpur – March 3, 2016 by Felipe Claro, President of AIPPI
On March 3, 2016 the first of many AIPPI ASEAN Regional Seminars took place in Kuala Lumpur. This is the first official activity organized by AIPPI in Malaysia, the first AIPPI Regional Seminar in ASEAN, and it is also the first time that both the President (Mr. Felipe Claro) and Vice-President (Mr. Hao Ma) visit such country in their respective capacities.
The Director General of the Intellectual Property Corporation of Malaysia, among other local authorities, attended the Seminar and met the AIPPI representatives. During his opening speech, the AIPPI President highlighted the importance of the ASEAN Region for the Association, which has become a big economic player after the creation of the ASEAN economic group. The establishment last year of the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) has created a major economic force – the third largest economy in Asia and seventh largest in the world. He offered cooperation by providing the AIPPI knowledge and study resources to support the AIPPI ASEAN members and encouraged them to start a longtime tradition of annual AIPPI ASEAN meetings. In this direction, it was gratifying to see that just after the Seminar in Kuala Lumpur it was decided to organize the second AIPPI ASEAN Regional Seminar in the Philippines, next March, 2017.
The moderators and speakers gave to the audience an overview of the legal situation in the different member countries, and underlined the harmonization needs, especially in countries like Vietnam and Myanmar.
On behalf of the Bureau of AIPPI, the President thanked the Malaysian National Group of AIPPI, including in particular its President, Michael Chai ,and Vice-President and Chairperson of the Organizing Committee, Ameet Kaur Purba. In addition, a heartfelt thank was expressed to the Bureau colleague Karen Abraham, both for her instrumental role in bringing about this seminar and her tireless efforts over many years in raising the profile of the ASEAN member countries within the AIPPI family.
The signing of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) by several ASEAN countries last October has further highlighted the importance of the ASEAN region in the integration of global economic activity. Those looking at Asia today recognize the new and dynamic economic power of the ASEAN countries.
Last October at the Congress in Rio de Janeiro, AIPPI was pleased to welcome the new National Group formed in Vietnam, bringing to six the number of AIPPI National Groups from the ten ASEAN countries (Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam).
AIPPI is determined to strengthen its presence in the ASEAN countries and will continue to increase its membership from the region with the goal of forming additional National Groups.
Immediately after the Regional Seminar, both the AIPPI President and Vice-President attended the Opening of the Annual Meeting of the ASEAN IPA Association, www.aseanipa.org, also held in Kuala Lumpur, city where this Association was founded 20 years ago. The ASEAN IPA President, Chew Phye Keat, welcomed the AIPPI representatives and explained his intention to move into a next phase of developing and strengthening de IP system and laws in the ASEAN countries. Considering that after the TPP the Madrid Protocol will be implemented in the ASEAN countries, ASEAN is exploring the possibility of having a “mini-Madrid” system only for the ASEAN countries.