From October 2016 to March 2017 the team is joined by Guest Kats Rosie Burbidge and Eibhlin Vardy, and by InternKats Verónica Rodríguez Arguijo, Tian Lu and Hayleigh Bosher.

Wednesday, 26 August 2015

“Simple Past, Present Continuous…Future Perfect?” GFIP Conference Report II

The second plenary session for Day 1 was devoted to the topic of ASEAN Economic Integration 2015—Opportunities, Interoperability and Synergies in IP. ASEAN, the Association of Southeast Nations, is a political and economic organization consisting of 10 member states—Singapore, Indonesia, the Philippines, Malaysia, Thailand, Brunei, Cambodia, Laos, Vietnam and Myanmar. The economic clout of ASEAN surprised this Kat. Its total population is 625 million residents and its GDP is estimated at $2.6 trillion dollars, which in the aggregate makes it the 7th largest economy in the world. Because of this 2015 ASEAN Economic Integration, special attention was given to developments in the region.

The substance of the panel presentation was divided into two parts. The first speaker, Dr Cham Prasidh, Cambodian Senior Minister for Industry and Handicrafts, spoke candidly about his country’s need for assistance from other member countries in connection with creating an effective IP infrastructure. Singapore and IPOS were prominently mentioned in this connection. Following Dr Prasidh, each of the three other speakers on the panel—Mr Tan Yih San, Chief Executive of IPOS, Mr Pushpanathan Sundram, currently managing director of EAS Strategies and former Deputy Secretary General for the ASEAN Community, and Ms Audrey Yap, of the Singapore law firm of Audrey & Partners, talked about various aspects of how the economic integration of the region, including IP aspects.

The challenge at the national level is whether a free flow of goods can occur in the absence of robust IP protection. In this context, Mr. Tan referred to the ASEAN IPR Strategic Action Plan and speculated whether it will be possible to one day achieve regional integration of IP throughout the region. Mr Pushpanathan Sundram noted that the ASEAN member countries are in the aggregate the recipient of more foreign direct investment than China. Ms Yap focused on a number of companies that have achieved success across various countries with the ASEAN regime and the part played by trade marks in facilitating this success.

This Kat notes that one of the parallel sessions for Day 2 of the programme is “ASEAN-IP Strategies and Risk Management”, where the IP aspects of ASEAN economic integration are covered in greater detail. Unfortunately, this Kat was unable to unable to attend this parallel session.

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