Cross ministerial coordination of IP activities
An example from the Philippines
The Philippines has been off the USTR Special 301 Watch List for 4 years now. One of the primary reasons for this is the formation and activities of the National Committee on Intellectual Property Rights (NCIPR). This is an interagency body to drive policy and improve IPR protection. The NCIPR has 12 members, with the Department of Trade and Industry as chair and the IP Office as vice chair.
Many countries struggle to implement IP policy across multiple ministries. Typically IP touches and involves multiple government bodies - IP offices, Prosecutors, Judges, Customs, Police, other administrative agencies, Information and Education, the Ministries for Health and F&B as well as Trade or Commerce as well as National Research agencies. Most countries' IP departments/offices are simply not given the authority to direct IP improvements at other ministries. IP protection always languishes when there is no top down drive.
The NCIPR is now regarded regional “best practice” for collaboration among agencies responsible for IPRs. The IPO team, as vice chair of the NCIPR, is tasked to lead coordination efforts. They arrange meetings, drive enforcement activities, run an annual IP Summit, liaise with IP organizations, IP owners and IP practitioners; and conduct of education and awareness campaigns.
The NCIPR is now spearheading the National Intellectual Property Strategy (NIPS) of the Philippines, a project also being undertaken by the IPOPHL in collaboration with WIPO.