At a meeting on October 12, 2009 in Beirut, WIPO Director General Francis Gurry and President Michel Suleiman of Lebanon discussed the pivotal role of balanced national intellectual property (IP) regimes in promoting development, as well as WIPO’s capacity building activities in Lebanon.
WIPO member states, at their annual Assemblies from September 22 to October 1, 2009, signaled strong support for the Organization’s strategic realignment with the endorsement of a program and budget for the 2010/11 biennium that boosts WIPO’s development-related activities, emphasizes the need to advance the Organization’s normative work, and further upgrades its services to the private sector. The member states also agreed to renew the mandate of the Intergovernmental Committee on Intellectual Property, Traditional Knowledge, Folklore and Genetic Resources (IGC).
WIPO will host an open forum on October 13 and 14, 2009 at its Geneva headquarters to present projects relating to the development agenda to be discussed at the next session of the Committee on Development and Intellectual Property (CDIP) from November 16 to 20, 2009.
Member states moved on September 24, 2009 to simplify the international design registration system by suspending the earliest of the three Acts that govern the Hague Agreement concerning the International Deposit of Industrial Designs. This decision will streamline the administration of the Treaty, which offers the possibility to protect designs in several countries by filing one single application (in one language with one set of fees in one currency - Swiss francs). The Hague system also simplifies the subsequent management of industrial design rights.
Thailand’s Deputy Minister of Commerce, Mr. Alondkorn Ponlaboot, on September 24, 2009 deposited his country’s instrument of accession to the Patent Cooperation Treaty (PCT) with WIPO Director General Francis Gurry. Thailand is the 142nd contracting state of this multilateral pact that facilitates the filing of patents in multiple countries. The treaty will enter into force for Thailand on December 24, 2009.
The World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) signed on September 23an agreement with the International Federation of Musicians (FIM) and the International Federation of Actors (FIA) to support efforts to improve recognition of the significant contributions made by actors and musicians around the world.
Government ministers participating in the first-ever High Level Segment of the Assemblies of the member states of WIPO on September 22 and 23, 2009, endorsed WIPO’s progress toward its strategic goals, which they said marked a new era for the Organization and its ability to ensure that the intellectual property (IP) system helps meet an increasing number of global challenges. They emphasized that IP is now widely perceived as a key policy tool to promote public interest, innovation and technological progress.
On the sidelines of the ministerial segment of the WIPO’s Assemblies, Kenya’s Minister of Industrialization, Mr. Henry K. Kosgey, and the Director General of WIPO, Mr Francis Gurry, signed a cooperation agreement covering access to and dissemination of national patent documents. This is the latest in a series of agreements between WIPO and intellectual property offices of developing countries to enhance access to patent information. Similar agreements exist with ARIPO, Brazil, Cuba, Israel, Mexico, Morocco, Peru, Republic of Korea, Singapore, South Africa, and Vietnam.
In his opening statement to the annual meetings of the member states of the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO), Director General Francis Gurry called on member states to work together to ensure that the IP system serves as a stimulus for developing solutions to the global challenges confronting policy makers across the world.