WIPO IP Enforcement News: June 2009
I. SELECTED WIPO ACTIVITIES
Fifth Global Congress on Combating Counterfeiting and Piracy: The fifth Global Congress will be held in Cancun, Mexico, from December 1 to 3, 2009. The Congress will be hosted by the International Criminal Police Organization (INTERPOL) and the Mexican Institute of Industrial Property (IMPI). Co-convenors are the World Customs Organization (WCO), WIPO, the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) through its BASCAP initiative, the International Trademark Association (INTA), and the International Security Management Association (ISMA). For information on the Global Congress initiative, as well as on agenda, reservation and logistics see http://www.ccapcongress.net/.
IP ENFORCEMENT TRAINING AND STRATEGY CONSULTATIONS
WIPO continued to organize, or assist in, a series of national and regional workshops, training courses, conferences and consultations on intellectual property law enforcement, in response to requests from its Member States. Those events included the following:
- Caribbean: a special invitation to participate in the Commonwealth Consultative Meeting on Cooperation on the Enforcement of Intellectual Property Rights, Belize City, March 24 to 26, 2009; convened by resolution at Ministerial level and organized by the Commonwealth Secretariat, Belize City, March 24 to 26, 2009;
- Moldova: WIPO National Seminar for Judiciary, Police and Customs on the Enforcement of Intellectual Property Rights, Kishinev, April 7 and 8, 2009;
- Bangladesh: Consultation meetings on EC-WIPO Project in Dhaka, Bangladesh, May 4 to 7, 2009. The objectives were to review the Bangladeshi IP enforcement legal framework; determine the training and awareness needs in both the public and private sectors; and review the public/private cooperation structures to render IP enforcement efficient;
- Nigeria: Conference on Enforcement of Copyright: Building Strategies for Effective Protection and Enforcement in the 21st Century, co‑organized by WIPO and the Nigerian Copyright Commission (NCC), Abuja, May 5 and 6, 2009;
- South Africa: Regional IP Enforcement: The Border and Beyond, organized under the US Department of Commerce, Commercial Law Development Program (CLDP), with the assistance of the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office and the US Department of Justice, in coordination with the Department of Trade and Industry (the dti) and the South African Revenue Service, with funding by USAID; Cape Town, May 13 to 15, 2009.
NEW WIPO ENFORCEMENT PUBLICATION
Following the success of the 2005 WIPO publication No. 791E (WIPO Intellectual Property Enforcement Case Book), its author, the Hon. Justice Louis Harms, Deputy President of the Supreme Court of South Africa, updated its common law part and added ample references to case law developments in countries within the civil law tradition. Launched in the first quarter of 2009, the new casebook is intended for use by judges, attorneys and right holders, and is of special interest to those in developing countries.
II. COOPERATION WITH INTERGOVERNMENTAL AND NON–GOVERNMENTAL ORGANIZATIONS
G8: MEETING OF THE ADVISORY GROUP ON COUNTERFEITING AND PIRACY
On April 27 and 28, 2009, the second meeting of the G8 IP Expert Group (IPEG) was convened in Rome and focused on the draft report of discussions, prepared by the Italian Presidency, and its finalization on issues such as the importance of strengthen cooperation among customs authorities, the problem of internet and digital piracy, and the G8 technical assistance pilot plans. The results of the discussions will be reported to the G8 leaders for the G8 meeting to take place from July 8 to 10, 2009, in l’Aquila (Abruzzo Region) in Italy. WIPO participated in an observer capacity.
COOPERATION WITH THE UNITED NATIONS CONFERENCE ON TRADE AND DEVELOPMENT (UNCTAD): ROUNDTABLE ON THE FUTURE OF IPR ENFORCEMENT
WIPO participated in the Roundtable on the WTO US-China Panel Report: Findings and Implications for the Future of IPR Enforcement, organized by the UNCTAD and the International Centre for Trade and Sustainable Development (ICTSD) in Geneva on February 23, 2009.
COOPERATION WITH THE ORGANIZATION OF ECONOMIC COOPERATION AND DEVELOPMENT (OECD): WORK ON PHASE III OF PROJECT ON COUNTERFEITING AND PIRACY
WIPO attended a meeting of the OECD Informal Advisory Group (IAG) in Paris on May 5, 2009, which considered the scope of Phase III of the OECD Project on Counterfeit and Piracy. The project was launched in 2005 to assess the economic impact of counterfeiting and piracy in order to improve the factual understanding and awareness of the effects that infringement of IPRs have on governments, businesses and consumers. Both Phase I (focusing on tangible products that infringe trademarks, copyrights, patents and design rights) and Phase II (covering digital piracy) have been completed. The objective of Phase III is to study the infringement of the other IPRs as provided for in the TRIPS Agreement.
For more information about the study, including the full report of the Phase I and the pre-publication version of the final report of Phase II, consult: http://www.oecd.org/document/50/0,3343,en_2649_34173_39542514_1_1_1_1,00.html.
CANADA: THE ROYAL CANADIAN MOUNTED POLICE BROCHURE ON INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY CRIMES
The Royal Canadian Mounted Police issued a brochure entitled “Intellectual Property Crime…Everyone Pays” to raise awareness about the risks associated with counterfeit products. The brochure is intended to provide consumers with practical information about the types of counterfeit products; how they can affect consumers; how to recognize such products and what action to take if it is suspected that a purchased product is counterfeit. The brochure is available at: http://www.rcmp-grc.gc.ca/fep-pelf/ipr-dpi/brochure-eng.htm.
CHILE: TASK FORCE SPECIALIZED IN INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY CRIMES
The Chilean authorities announced that a new task force known by its Spanish acronym, BRIDEPI, achieved important results in the battle against criminal organizations dedicated to trading in counterfeit and pirated products. The new task force was created by the General Order No. 2176, with a view to establishing a permanent and specialized body dedicated to the fight against counterfeiting and piracy in Chile. Further information is available at: http://www.consejodelacultura.cl/portal/index.php?page=articulo&articulo=4391.
CHINA (I): RISING NUMBER OF IP CASES IN COURTS
During a national seminar on IPR trials held in Chongqing, China, it was revealed that China’s courts had handled more than 20,000 IPR-related cases in the first ten months of 2008. This represents a year-on-year rise of nearly 40 percent according to a special report issued by the Chinese authorities. The report stated that Chinese courts will impose greater penalties on intellectual property violations to allow the judiciary to deter in the country’s overall protection strategy. The full text of the report is available at: http://english.ipr.gov.cn/en/upload/IPRFocus/IPR%20Focus0901.pdf.
CHINA (II): “ROADMAP FOR INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY PROTECTION”
As a part of a series of guides prepared under the European Union-China Project on the Protection of intellectual Property Rights (IPR2), a new guide issued in March 2009 provides up-to-date information on copyright protection in China. The publication includes diverse topics, and devotes a number of sections to the enforcement of IP rights, covering issues ranging from the definition of infringement to judicial and administrative enforcement. The guide is available at: http://www.ipr2.org/images/stories/copyright_roadmap_china_en.pdf.
EU LAUNCHES NEW EUROPEAN OBSERVATORY ON COUNTERFEITING AND PIRACY
During the ContraFake 2009 high level conference on counterfeiting and piracy in Brussels on April 2, the EU launched the European Observatory on Counterfeiting and Piracy. Run by the Commission services, where each Member State and key representatives of private sector businesses affected by counterfeiting and piracy will have a delegate, the Observatory aims to be at the forefront in the fight against fake goods by enhancing cooperation across the EU. More information is available at: http://ec.europa.eu/internal_market/smn/smn54/docs/counterfeiting_en.pdf.
MEXICO: RAISING AWARENESS CAMPAIGN AMONG CHILDREN
The Mexican Institute of Industrial Property (IMPI) announced the winners of the “First Competition of Children’s Painting: For the respect of the ideas… The Children against Piracy”, organized by the national authorities with the support of the private sector. The competition was intended to raise awareness among children about the importance of respecting intellectual property, and to involve them actively in the fight against piracy by playing “inspectors”. The authorities reported that 1,414 paintings had been submitted. More information is available at: http://www.impi.gob.mx/wb/IMPI/ganadores_del_primer_concurso_de_dibujo_infantil.
SPAIN: THIRD CAMPAIGN AGAINST PIRACY
On November 25, 2008, the Ministry of Culture launched the third campaign against piracy as a part of an integral plan approved by the Council of Ministers in 2005, which aims at reducing and eliminating activities that infringe intellectual property rights. This IP awareness campaign targets consumers and users of cultural products and services, including those offered on-line. The campaign includes on-line messages, radio and TV spots, posters in public places such as subways, as well as announcements in universities and other academic institutions. More information is available at: http://www.la-moncloa.es/ServiciosdePrensa/NotasPrensa/MCU/_2008/ntpr20081125_Pirata.htm.
UNITED STATES: ANNUAL REPORT ON SEIZURE OF COUNTERFEIT AND PIRATED GOODS
On January 8, 2009, the U.S. Customs authorities released their annual report on seizures of counterfeit and pirated goods. The report showed that the seizures totaled more than $272.7 million, representing a 38% increase in domestic value over figures for 2007. Among the products seized were electrical articles, semiconductors, computer network hardware, sunglasses, pharmaceuticals and perfumes. More information is available at: http://www.cbp.gov/xp/cgov/newsroom/news_releases/january_2009/01082009.xml.