The 17th ASEAN Patent Examination Cooperation (“ASPEC”) Task Force was held via video conference on 2 March 2021.

As part of the core agenda, the Meeting discussed ways to increase regional awareness of ASPEC and to maintain ASPEC’s relevance to businesses.  This allows businesses to remain confident about their trade prospects in ASEAN.  ASEAN Member States IP Offices also affirmed their commitment to process ASPEC applications and support initiatives to improve the ASPEC regime. The meeting had a fruitful exchange of views, with the Task Force members strengthening cooperation to serve the innovation community.

The  2-day 12th ASEAN Community of Practice (“CoP”) for Patent Examiners Workshop was also held in conjunction with the ASPEC Taskforce Meeting. The CoP was suspended last year due to the COVID-19 outbreak and the CoP Workshop resumed this year virtually for the first time.  Participants from ASEAN Member States IP Offices continued to show their desire for co-operation in patent search and examination. The CoP programme featured sharing by ASEAN delegates on developments in search and examination practices and their respective quality management systems, followed by an analysis of case studies relating to Industry 4.0 inventions.