本 期 提 要HEADLINES
Year 2002: Action Year of Intellectual Property Right Protection
On January 1, 2002 Taiwan became a member of WTO. The former Premier Chang of the Executive Yuan had instructed that the year 2002 would be designated as the "Action Year of Intellectual Property Right Protection", in order to highlight the Government's determination in protecting intellectual property rights, to reinforce relevant governmental departments' enforcement ability, and to enhance the general public's IPR awareness. All relevant governmental bodies and departments had been instructed to actively cooperative with this initiative, which will aim to encourage inventions and innovations, as well as create a quality environment for industrial development. The National Information and Communication Initiative (NICI) will be responsible for promoting and regularly monitoring the Action Year activities.
The former Premier Chang had also issued the following instructions: (1) As Taiwan is now an official member of the WTO, intellectual property right protection is not only an obligation but is also in Taiwan's best interests. All governmental departments and enterprises should abide by these obligations, and relevant bodies should also inform our international friends of the results of our IPR protection and anti-counterfeiting efforts; (2) The Prosecutor's Office of the High Court of Taiwan (Ministry of Justice) should immediately establish a "Special Enforcement Report for Action Year of Intellectual Property Right Protection", which will coordinate the enforcement efforts of police and prosecutors, with regular reporting mechanisms to discuss results; (3) Te Ministry of Economic Affairs should be responsible for coordinating the exercise of IPRs by IPR owner associations, for accelerating the amendment of relevant laws so that such laws become more comprehensive, and for providing enforcement agencies with the relevant information and administrative support; the Directorate General of Customs (Ministry of Finance) and its subordinate offices should strengthen border monitoring and checks, in order to prevent the importation, exportation or transportation of counterfeit products; the Coast Guard Administrative (Ministry of Interior Affairs) should also strictly block all possible channels for smuggling.
Mr Tsai Ching-Yen, a minister of state of the Executive Yuan, also recently indicated that the Executive Yuan will request the Ministry of Justice to establish a "Special Enforcement Report" that will coordinate anti-counterfeiting efforts; the National Police Administration will provide the necessary manpower for enforcing anti-counterfeiting efforts; the MOEA will be responsible for coordinating and promoting the exercise of IPRs, and for providing necessary professional and administrative support; the Ministry of Finance will strengthen border controls; the Ministry of Education will enhance campus education; while the Accounts Department will monitor government departments and bodies' use of licensed software. With the joint efforts of all relevant departments in positively supporting the Action Year of Intellectual Property Right Protection, we have no doubt that IPR protection will take deep root in Taiwan, as well as enhance our international image and competitiveness.
(For activities related to the "Action Year of Intellectual Property Right Protection", please contact the Intellectual Property Office of the MOEA at (02) 2738-007 ext. 2925 or go to its website at http://www.moeaipo.gov.tw).
ROC Industries & Businesses Joint Declaration of Self-Discipline on IPR Protection
In support of the Action Year of Intellectual Property Protection, and the public letter of the former Premier Chang of the Executive Yuan calling for general respect and protection of IPRs, the Chinese National Federation of Industries and the General Chamber of Commerce of ROC together made their "Joint Declaration of Self-Discipline on IPR Protection" on January 25, 2002 in the Grand Hall of the MOEA. In this Joint Declaration, they called for industries and businesses to abide by the concept of "user pays" in using licensed software, and refrain from manufacturing, selling and purchasing counterfeit products, as well as combat against cross-straits and international counterfeiting chains. In this way we will build a quality industrial and business environment in Taiwan, enhance our international competitiveness and image, and create a "green silicon island" that is ready for the global digital and knowledge economy era.
Following the Joint Declaration, the IPO and the Directorate General of Customs held a "Destruction of Counterfeit Products" ceremony in the MOEA Square to indicate the Government's determination to combat against counterfeiting. Over 63,190 items of counterfeit products were destroyed, including 51,000 laser disks, 6,513 watches, 4,077 watch accessories, 200 cassette games and 1,400 PC boards.
Anti-Counterfeiting Measures and Results
The Government has established cross-departmental systems and mechanisms to thoroughly enforce its IPR protection policy. As a result of the cooperation of all relevant departments and bodies, the efficient coordination of resources, a sound legal structure and public education have all been greatly effective in preventing counterfeiting.
Insofar as prosecution of counterfeiting is concerned, the National Police Administration had already prepared a "Plan for National Police Administration of the Ministry of Interior Affairs in Enforcing Protection of IPRs", which forms the basis for enforcement efforts of all police departments across the country. Important measures recently added to this Plan are:
(1) Starting from September 1, 2000 police departments must assign special taskforces to target illegal underground manufacturers, vendors, night markets and major shopping districts, and designate special personnel to conduct regular raids twice a month (once during each half of the month).
(2) In order to strengthen investigation of IPR infringement cases, as of September 1, 2000 a portion of the 2nd General Team will be given specialized anti-counterfeiting training and assigned to special taskforces in stages. At present there are three taskforces, one each located in the north, center, and south of Taiwan.
(3) On January 15, 2001 all police units were notified in writing that owner associations or the general public may utilize the 110 task allocation system to report IPR infringement cases.
The abovementioned Plan was revised again in July 2001, to further require subordinate police departments to assign personnel to be particularly responsible for IPR infringement cases. Not only are higher points allocated for enforcement efforts in this area, there is also greater monitoring of enforcement results. Substantive results of investigations are as follows:
(1) During the year 2000 the police handled 4,304 cases of IPR infringement, an increase of 67% from 2,568 cases in 1999. These cases included 846 trademark cases, 178 patent cases, and 3,280 copyright cases. The total value of counterfeit products confiscated was estimated to be in excess of NT$8,358 million. From January to November 2001 the police handled 4,848 cases, with the total value of confiscated counterfeit products estimated at in excess of NT$7,925 million.
(2) The 2nd General Team investigated 795 cases during the year 2000, involving 36 underground factories, more than 190,000 audiovisual disks and more than 50,000 computer software disks, with the total value of counterfeit products confiscated estimated at in excess of NT$7,963 million. From January to December 2001 the Team also investigated 1,030 cases, with total value of confiscated products estimated at NT$3,900 million.
Optical Media Joint Investigation Taskforce
Pursuant to the Optical Media Management Law and relevant regulations, the IPO of the MOEA, the Anti-Counterfeiting Taskforce, the Board of Foreign Trade, the Industrial Development Bureau and the Bureau of Standards, Metrology and Inspection recently established the Optical Media Joint Investigation Taskforce. They are also preparing an investigation plan, under which general supervision and investigation of optical media manufacturers will be undertaken in stages.
第五屆中法工業財產權會議已於今年(91)一月十八日上午假台北市經濟部智慧財產局舉行，出席代表包括法國工業財產局局長Mr. Daniel Hangard、我智慧財產局局長陳明邦及雙方相關業務主管等。
本次會議草簽「修正中法專利商標優先權換函」，將申請權人由法國國民擴及至與我國有互惠關係的「巴黎保護工業財產權公約 Paris Convention for the Protection of Industrial Property」及「世界貿易組織 World Trade Organization」簽署國及會員國之國民。凡該等國家之國民，於向法國申請專利或商標註冊時，皆可向我申請優先權。
ROC and France Revise Patent & Trademark Priority Reciprocity Agreements
The fifth ROC-France Industrial Property Conference took place on January 18, 2002 at the Intellectual Property Office of the MOEA in Taipei. Attending dignitaries included the director of the Industrial Property Office of France, Mr Daniel Hangard, the director general of the Intellectual Property Office of ROC, Mr. Chen Ming-Bang, and related officers from both countries.
During this conference, ROC and France signed a preliminary agreement on "Revision of ROC & France Patent & Trademark Priority Reciprocity Agreements", which extended the scope of applicants from French nationals to nationals of members of the Paris Convention for the Protection of Industrial Property and members of the World Trade Organization, who have a relationship of reciprocity with the ROC. Nationals of such countries will enjoy a priority right of application in ROC when they have also filed a patent or trademark application in France.
Goods & Services Similarities Search
On December 24, 2001 the IPO announced the revision of its "Goods & Services Similar Classes Reference", and accordingly published the "Goods & Services Similarities Search" on January 1, 2002.
The IPO indicated that pursuant to Article 15, Paragraph 2 of the Trademark Law Enforcement Rules, the question of similarity of products should be determined by social conventions, market circumstances, and the products' raw materials, purpose, functions, manufacturer, distribution channels and place, as well as potential purchasers. Pursuant to Paragraph 3 of the same article, similarity of services should be determined by social conventions, market circumstances, and the nature, contents, provider, distribution channels and place, as well as potential recipients of the services.
The goods/services groups in the aforementioned Search only specify the scope of goods/services that should be searched in respect of similarity in trademarks/service marks. If necessary, applicants should also search goods/services that have not been specified in the Search, but are relevant by virtue of their functions, purposes, trading customs or actual market circumstances.
According to the IPO, the aforementioned Search was first based on the revised "Goods & Services Similar Classes Reference", with reference to the 7th edition of the "International Classification of Goods and Services for the Purposes of the Registration of Marks under the Nice Agreement" (Nice Agreement). The search in booklet form will later be published, in conjunction with legislative amendments set out in the schedule to Article 49 of the Trademark Law Enforcement Rules, and the 8th edition of the Nice Agreement. Further, where the "List of Goods & Services" published by the IPO in January 2001 is different from the aforementioned Search in terms of classification of goods and services, the Search will prevail.