Myanmar's future IP office

Myanmar’s proposal for the establishment of its IP department is now becoming clearer. The government plans to set up an Intellectual Property Committee led by the Ministry of Education (which incorporates the old Ministry of Science and Technology), including various NGOs and experts as well as the Director General of the IP Department. The Committee’s function will be to set national IP policies and plans, review international IP agreements to consider acceding to and through various working groups perform various other IP related functions such as overseeing issues and taking action relating to IP infringement.

The IP Department (which sits under the Committee) functions will include government coordination, implementing the Committee’s policies and plans and reporting to the Committee, as well as liaising with overseas IP bodies, setting fees, running the IP registries, IP publication and other functions.

The Director General appoints the registrars and examiners for each IP registry. Each Registrar will run the application and registration processes, including granting IP rights and oppositions. The IPO will also have a IP Policy & Planning department as well as Education & Awareness, and the usual administrative functions.

New suggestions on the transition from the existing deposit system to the new system are being made now. It appears some form of re-filing will be needed, the precise scope and effect of which will be revealed in new regulations