The 8th Meeting of China-ASEAN Heads of Intellectual Property Offices Held in Suzhou

On September 18, the 8th Meeting of China-ASEAN Heads of Intellectual Property Offices was held in Suzhou, Jiangsu. Guests addressing the meeting were Shen Changyu, Commissioner of State Intellectual Property Office (SIPO), Wu Zhenglong, Provincial Governor of Jiangsu People's Government, Josephine R. Santiago, Director General of the Intellectual Property Office of the Philippines (IPOPHL) and Chairperson-in-office for the ASEAN Working Group on Intellectual Property Cooperation. Shen Changyu said that joint efforts were needed to promote cooperation between China and ASEAN on intellectual property (IP) from all aspects, and turn it an example for IP cooperation under the background of the Belt and Road initiative.

Before the meeting, Wu Zhenglong met with the delegation led by Commissioner Shen Changyu and representatives of ASEAN. He expressed congratulations towards the opening of the meeting and warm welcome to the participants. Shen Changyu expressed gratitude towards Jiangsu Provincial Party Committee and Provincial Government for their support, and briefed on the general situation of the meeting.

At the meeting, Shen Changyu said that the friendship between China and ASEAN and ASEAN member countries has a long history, especially since the establishment of dialogues between the two sides in 1991. The two sides have adhered to the theme of cooperation and development and deepened political mutual trust with fruitful pragmatic cooperation. Next year will be the 15th anniversary of China - ASEAN strategic partnership, an important time for cooperation. Not long ago, President Xi Jinping expressed his wishes in his letter of congratulation for the 50th anniversary of the establishment of ASEAN, to build a closer China-ASEAN community of common destiny, making it a model of the Asian community of common destiny, which has brought new opportunities for IP cooperation between the two sides, and also pointed out the direction of efforts.

Shen Changyu pointed out that for a long time, China-ASEAN has maintained fruitful interaction and cooperation in the field of IP. In 2009, SIPO, on behalf of the Chinese government, signed a Memorandum of Understanding on China-ASEAN Cooperation in Intellectual Property with ASEAN member governments, opening a new chapter in China-ASEAN IP cooperation. Since then, through the annual meeting of China-ASEAN Intellectual Property Office heads and related activities, the two sides have deepened their understanding about each other in the field of IP cooperation and achieved fruitful results. China appreciates ASEAN's efforts and achievements in promoting IP development and hopes that the two sides would share their latest IP developments and their useful experiences in promoting innovation and development, enhance mutual friendly exchanges and cooperation with each other, and promote cooperation between China and ASEAN to develop in depth. China wishes the cooperation efforts in IP would provide strong support for each country's scientific and technological innovation and economic prosperity.

Wu Zhenglong said that Jiangsu Province is a highly open province and has established trade relations with more than 220 countries and regions. The import and export trade volume last year amounted to more than US$500 billion. Among them, ASEAN is Jiangsu's largest trading partner in Asia, and bilateral trade volume reached US$58.7 billion last year. Jiangsu will take this meeting as an opportunity to conscientiously implement the central government's decisions and arrangements and further strengthen IP cooperation between Jiangsu and ASEAN countries under the guidance of SIPO to learn advanced concepts and experiences. Jiangsu will also strengthen exchanges in IP system building, personnel training, patent transformation and utilization, high-tech enterprises and industrial cultivation, among more issues; expand cooperation on IPR protection and patent rights protection for foreign affairs-related companies. IP will play a better role in supporting and promoting economic and social development for innovation, development and a better future.

Josephine R. Santiago said in recent years, ASEAN and China have achieved fruitful cooperation in the field of IP. IP is an important cornerstone of economic development, which can promote the transformation of scientific and technological achievements into real productive forces and further drive innovation. At present, under the guidance of ASEAN IP Rights Action Plan 2016-2025, ASEAN countries are working to promote regional economic integration. Despite the many uncertainties in the global economy, China remains ASEAN's largest trading partner. Through the Belt and Road initiative, China has played an important role in promoting regional economic development and enhancing consultation and cooperation. It is hoped that the two sides will further strengthen cooperation in the fields of economy and intellectual property and promote economic prosperity.

The meeting briefly reviewed the China-ASEAN IPR cooperation history. Since the signing of the Memorandum of Understanding on China-ASEAN Cooperation in Intellectual Property in 2009, bilateral IP cooperation has been deepened through the annual meeting of the China-ASEAN Intellectual Property Office heads and related activities. After eight years of efforts, a main China-ASEAN IP cooperation structure has been basically established, bringing increasingly close cooperative relations. In 2016, ASEAN countries accounted for half among the total patent application by Chinese in the countries and regions along the Belt and Road.

The meeting listened to the report on the implementation of the China-ASEAN IPR cooperation plan for 2016-2017, and deliberated and approved the China-ASEAN IPR Cooperation Plan for 2017-2018. According to the new work plan, the two sides will continue to cooperate in capacity building, personnel training and IP value evaluation, explore the establishment of a review work sharing mechanism, and enhance interaction with IP users. (Translated from SIPO Website Chinese Version) 

2017-09-26