1. A PATINEX 2017 (13th International Patent Information Expo) was held
The Korean Intellectual Property Office (KIPO) held the 'PATINEX 2017 (International PATent Information EXpo) in the Imperial Palace Hotel with the event addressing the 'Strategies to use IP information in the 4th industrial revolution era.'
As the biggest Korean patent information event, this PATINEX included a conference with presentations and discussions by world patent information experts and exhibits to experience a diversity of products of patent information service companies.
On September 7, 2017, the first day of the event, patent experts of Microsoft and Xiaomi, in the software and manufacturing company position, proceeded with lectures and panel discussions regarding the management strategies to prepare for the 4th industrial revolution era.
On the second day, September 8th, Korean and foreign lecturers spoke on expected IP market changes and countermeasures thereto in the major countries, the US, China, Europe, etc. and provided a diversity of lectures on the latest IP trends in the major technical fields, such as the 5th generation (5G) mobile communications, big data and new materials, etc. of the 4th industrial revolution.
In addition to the conferences, the exhibition was also held for people to directly experience various patent information services of about 20 Korean and foreign patent information service companies including the startups, WIPS, ANYFIVE, LexisNexis, Wert Intelligence, Kiv, etc.
2. A multi-year (covering two years) IP lawsuit insurance is released
According to KIPO, the multi-year (two year) IP lawsuit insurance is released on a trial basis, to improve an export company's global counteracting capability to an IP-related dispute.
The IP lawsuit insurance is to guarantee the lawsuit and attorney fees, etc. incurred when an IP dispute occurs in a foreign country.
Korean companies' IP damages have recently increased as their trademark rights were challenged in foreign countries including China. KIPO has continuously developed insurance products such that a Korean company is able to efficiently cope with an IP dispute. At present, KIPO operates four (4) kinds of insurances: a global total insurance, a group insurance for advancing into Asia, a group insurance for advancing into North America and Europe, and a trademark and design insurance specialized in the area of agricultural foods.
This year, KIPO newly released the multi-year (two year) IP group insurance, by improving on the drawback of a single year (one year) insurance product as the insurance period is short in comparison to the dispute period, to prevent any unintended discontinuity of the insurance period as a company misses the deadline to renew the insurance and to lessen the burden according to a re-contract.
3. Patent applications related to detergent technology using natural elements have been actively filed
According to KIPO, the number of patent applications related to the eco-friendly detergent technology using natural elements for the last ten (10) years has steadily increased.
The number of the foregoing applications was only 30 in 2007 but over 100 in 2016, increasing more than about three (3) times.
The majority of the patent applications related to the eco-friendly detergents using natural elements were in the bath-related products such as soap, shampoo, etc. However, recently the number of the applications related to the detergents for kitchen or washing clothes has increased, showing that the range of applying the relevant technology has expanded.
Of the patent applications related to the detergents using natural elements, those related to the detergents for kitchen and washing clothes were less than 10% in 2007 but increased to 30% in 2016.
In this area, most of the relevant applications were originally filed by individual applicants. However, now the number of the applications filed by individual applicants has decreased and the number of the applications filed by companies or research agents has greatly increased. Thus, the research and development related to eco-friendly detergents are considered as being positively conducted.
The proportion of the relevant applications filed by companies and research agents in 2012 was about 25% but increased to about 58% in 2016.
4. KIPO opened an IP-DESK (overseas IP center) in India
- The IP base expands in Indian and ASEAN markets which are rapidly growing
On September 29, 2017, in New Delhi, KIPO and Korea Trade Investment Promotion Agency (KOTRA) jointly opened the IP-DESK in charge of supporting the IP protection of Korean companies in India.
The number of IP applications filed by Korean companies in India has rapidly increased over the last five (5) years and direct investment by Korean companies is 7th in world ranking. India is expected to be an important trade partner of Korea in the future.
The number of trademark applications filed by Korean companies increased from 247 in 2011 to 851 in 2015 (244%겒) and the number of patent applications increased from 731 in 2011 to 1,664 in 2015 (125%겒). Of the number of Korean companies advancing with overseas investment, 3,639 Korean companies invested in China, 2,746 in Vietnam, 783 in US and 294 in India (which is in 7th place).
The New Delhi IP-DESK provides a diversity of support services as follows: expert consultation on IP infringement of Korean companies in local, support the security of rights such as trademarks, designs, etc., and providing IP information, to provide a total support service to prevent an IP dispute of a Korean company and a counteraction to cope with the dispute if occurs.
In October 2017, another IP-DESK will be opened in Jakarta, Indonesia, which is expected to positively cope with a pending issue of an IP dispute including a counterfeit product distribution of a Korean company which expands to the southeast area beyond China.
At present, IP-DESKs are located in eight (8) countries (fourteen (14) cities): China (Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou, Qingdao, Shenyang, Xian), US (LA갋New York), Germany (Frankfurt), Japan (Tokyo), Vietnam (Ho Chi Minh), Thailand (Bangkok), India (New Delhi), Indonesia (Jakarta, which will be opened soon)