SUSTAINING THE GAINS IN IPR PROTECTION
IN THE PHILIPPINES
(Comment of the Government of the Republic of the Philippines (GRP) submitted to the
United States Trade Representative’s Office in relation to the 2008 Special 301:
I. Public Information and Education: Changing Mindsets
II. Effective Enforcement: Accelerating the Pace
III. Copyright Protection: New Strategies for Access to Knowledge
IV. Judicial Reforms, Adjudication and Alternatives: A Shifting Tide
V. Policy and Legislation: A Fresh Approach
VI. Inter-Agency Work and Public-Private Partnerships: Firm Foundations
VII. International Cooperation: Regional and Bilateral Strategies
CONCLUSION: SUSTAINING THE GAINS
In November of 2006, upon the recommendations of the Intellectual Property
Office of the Philippines (IP Philippines), President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo issued a
Presidential Memorandum on “Sustaining Our Gains in Intellectual Property Rights
(IPR),” addressed to the Cabinet Secretaries and sub-cabinet officials of key agencies
engaged in IPR protection. The latest in a series of Presidential memoranda in 2006,
“Sustaining Our Gains…” laid down strategic goals to curb piracy in the country. Her
earlier directives designated IP Philippines as oversight agency and instructed the
Department of Justice (DOJ) and law enforcement agencies to aggressively prosecute IPR
violators.The President’s memorandum became the basis of the Action Plan for 2007-
2008 of the National Committee on IPR (NCIPR) headed by the IP Philippines.
This Comment submitted by the Government of the Republic of the Philippines
(GRP) describes the work accomplished in 2007 in the eight components of the Action
Plan, namely: public information and education; enforcement; copyright protection;
judicial reforms and adjudication; policy and legislation; inter-governmental agency
coordination; public-private partnerships; and international cooperation.
In addition to the reforms institutionalized in the IPR regime, the Comment will
highlight some relatively new approaches and developments in the different components
of the action plan. Without minimizing the tough challenges the GRP still needs to hurdle,
this Comment will show the substantial outcomes, and not only outputs, that have
resulted from the GRP’s efforts. These outcomes have changed the political and social
landscape, making the environment more favorable to IPR protection and appreciation.
Viewed from this perspective – institutionalization of reforms and outcomes that
have shaped a more favorable environment for IPR, there can be no doubt now of the
GRP’s commitment to sustain its campaign to strengthen the IPR regime. Hence, this
Comment calls for the removal of the Philippines from the Watch List.
I. Public Information and Education: Changing Mindsets
Presidential directive: “Intensify public information and education campaign on
the importance of IPR in promoting creativity, innovation and competitiveness, and
educate our people, particularly the youth, on this matter, through our education
system, in order to develop an IP conscious culture.”
Mainstreaming IPR Education in Public Schools
Nothing less than changing mindsets about the importance of IPR is needed to
eradicate piracy and counterfeiting in society. To achieve such changes in cultural
attitudes requires information and education campaigns (short term as well as long term
approaches, negative as well as positive messages), complemented by conventional law
In 2006, the Bureau of Secondary Education of the Department of Education
(DepEd) approved the proposal of the National Book Development Board (NBDB), to
include IPR, particularly copyright, in the standard learning competencies for Economics
in Secondary Education.
The final draft of the IPR Teacher’s Manual and Student’s Guide Project proposal
and draft Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) was completed on 21 August 2007 by
representatives of IP Philippines, DepEd and NBDB. A MOA among NBDB, DepEd and
IP Philippines is expected to be signed in 2008 as soon as the resources are available to
produce the Teacher’s Manual and Student’s Guide in printed and digital formats. Forty-
nine thousand copies of the document entitled “IPR Teacher’s Guide and Student Manual
for Economics” will be produced and distributed to 5,000 public high schools by July
Supplementary materials for the other subject areas, namely: English, Economics,
Pilipino, Music and Arts, and Technology and Livelihood Education (TLE) will be
developed and published. However, due to the huge printing costs, the contents for the
other four subject areas will be posted online in the websites of the proponents for
downloading by public and private schools as well as local textbook publishers.
A five-day IPR Orientation and manuscript development workshop involving
subject specialists and curriculum writers, as well as the training of 189 Education
Supervisors I nationwide, with the support from the Instructional Materials Council
Secretariat (IMCS) and the IP Community, shall also be implemented in 2008.
Pilot testing in selected private and public schools in Luzon is proposed to
commence in school year 2009-2010, specifically for fourth year high school students.
Expanding the scope of the project to all levels in secondary education will depend on
available resources. A similar project modified to suit other levels of the educational
system from elementary to higher education is being conceptualized.
The Intellectual Property Research and Training Institute (IPRTI)
On 06 June 2007, IP Philippines inaugurated the Institute of Intellectual Property
Research and Training Institute (IPRTI), the first of its kind in the country. This institute
will educate and train scientists, inventors, teachers, entrepreneurs, artists, lawyers, judges
and law enforcers on how to protect and manage intellectual property assets. The IPRTI is
envisioned to be the center of IP education, training, and research in the Philippines and,
eventually, in the Southeast Asian region.
In its seven months of operation, the IPRTI has offered courses in patent drafting,
patent search and examination, and engineering and chemistry certificate courses for IP
lawyers. The IPRTI also started administering the Patent Agent Qualifying Examination
(PAQE). These courses, a component of the “Enhance IP Training Program” of the
IPRTI, aims to professionalize and upgrade IP practice in the areas of trademarks, patents,
adjudication and enforcement.
The IPRTI is preparing for other advanced courses for universities and research
and development institutions (RDIs), entrepreneurs, prosecutors and judges. The institute
has already explored bilateral cooperative relations with the IP Academy of Singapore,
the WIPO Worldwide Academy (WWA), the European Patent Office (EPO), and the
United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO).
For 2008 the Institute will launch its Specialized IP courses for judges, in
partnership with the Philippine Judicial Academy (PhilJA), and with commitments of
support from WIPO, the EPO and the USPTO.
Enhanced Public Information and Communications
Media always play a critical role in public information campaigns, and IP
Philippines values its relationship with its media partners. Press releases, enforcement
data and coverage of actual operations in the field continue to be popular among the print
and broadcast media. Through these press releases, media practitioners are also educated
on IPR, and feedback from this sector shows that the information is much appreciated.
Good media relations also allow IP Philippines to get more positive messages regarding
creativity and innovation across to the public.
Proactive engagement with the media resulted in three hundred fifty-five (355)1
news reports on IPR enforcement, published almost daily in all nine (9) major dailies and
their online versions. More than P19 million worth of media values (exposure) were
generated from print, broadcast, television, radio and Internet media in 2007 - an increase
of 790.34 % from 2006 media values generated.
On radio, IPR obtained considerable airtime, including weekly segments every
Saturday for two (2) seasons on “Konsyumer Atbp,” a popular radio program on DZMM,
the highest rating AM station in the country. IP Philippines is conceptualizing its own
radio and television program on IP to be launched in 2008 or 2009.
January (39), February (21), March (36), April (36), May (18), June (38), July (38), August (26),
September (28), October (25), November (21) and December (29).
High-impact events are important parts of the information and education
campaigns, and they usually take place on World IP Day in April, the 10th Anniversary of
the Philippine IP Code in June and National IPR Week in October. Among these events
were art and technology exhibits, art competitions, conferences, trainings, seminars and a
popular anti-piracy concert. These high-impact events will be institutionalized this year in
partnership with the private sector.
The website of the IP Philippines is updated regularly with news and
developments on IPR in the country. It also hosts the IPR monitoring database of
enforcement actions and pending cases in the courts. The IP Philippines’ website received
a total of 96,9452 hits in 2007. For 2008, the IP Philippines website will have a complete
overhaul and new look to make it more attractive, comprehensive, and user friendly.
II. Effective Enforcement: Accelerating the Pace
Presidential directive: “Intensify regular and effective (A) raids and “spot”
inspections on factories that produce illegal optical discs, trademarked and
copyrighted goods, (B) seizure and destruction of pirated and counterfeited goods
and equipment used to produce them, and (C) arrests and prosecutions leading to
deterrent level sentences served.”
In 2007, the combined operations of the IPR Enforcement Units of the PNP, NBI,
OMB and BOC resulted in the confiscation of 7,301,262 pieces and 17,707 boxes/sacks
of fake goods with an estimated total value of P2,998,353,617.60. This amount exceeded
the government’s combined 2005 and 2006 record by P497,039,260.64.3
January – December 2007
NO. OF OPERATIONS QUANTITY
AGENCY of VALUE
Search Plant Boxes/
Inspection Seizure Pieces Container (Php)
Warrant Audit Sacks
NBI - 244 - - 329,283 17,707 - 260,928,950.00
PNP - 242 - - 315,352 - - 464,199,837.40
OMB 2,503 - 23 - 4,806,612 - - 1,120,489,200.00
BOC - - - 33 1,850,015 - - 1,152,735,630.20
TOTAL 2,503 486 23 33 7,301,262 17,707 - 2,998,353,617.60
January (16,847), February (5,209), March (no data), April (3,370), May (8,726), June (9,020), July
(10,587), August (8,464), September (9,140), October (9,373), November (9,050) and December (7,159).
2005: P1,148,088,760.00 and 2006: P1,353,225,596.96. TOTAL: P2,501,314,356.96.
There were a total of 3,045 reported enforcement operations conducted in 573
areas around the country. Of these activities, 2,503 were inspections of retail outlets and
production areas, 486 were by search warrants, 23 plant audits and 33 were warrants of
seizure and detention (WSD). Of the 573 raids, 31 raids were conducted in Binondo, 9
raids in Quiapo, 3 raids in 168 Shopping Mall, 11 raids in Greenhills, 6 raids in
Metrowalk and 11 raids in Makati Cinema Square. 505 raids were conducted in other
areas. The focused enforcement operations have resulted in visible reduction of pirated
and counterfeited goods in known “notorious” areas.
Summary of Enforcement Activities in Strategic Areas
January – December 2007
NO. OF AREAS RAIDED (Notorious Areas)
PERIOD AGENCY OTHERS
QUIAPO BINONDO CINEMA GREENHILLS
NBI 1 21 1 49
2007 PNP 1 5 - 1 4 50
OMB 7 5 5 3 10 7 406
Sub-Total 9 31 6 3 11 11 505
Grand Total 573
The performance of the different law enforcement agencies in the year 2007 are specified
The IPR Unit-Philippine National Police (IPU-PNP)
The IP unit of the PNP served 242 search warrants, arrested 59 persons, and
seized a total of 315,352 pieces of counterfeited/pirated goods worth P464,199,837.40.
This figure is just from the IP unit of the PNP and does not include the operations
conducted by field units. In 2007, the PNP started working on an internal reporting
system that would monitor IP-related operations around the country and it is expected to
be operational by 2008 (Annex “A”: Table 1)
The IPR Division-National Bureau of Investigation (IPRD-NBI)
In 2007, IPRD-NBI received 104 complaints and filed 423 cases directly with the
Department of Justice. It served 244 search warrants and seized a total of 329,283 pieces
and 17,707 boxes of counterfeited/pirated goods with an estimated value of
P260,928,950.00. (Annex “B”: Table 2)
The Optical Media Board (OMB)
The OMB conducted 2,526 operations (2,503 by inspections and 23 plant audits)
and seized 4,806,612 pieces of optical discs valued at P1,120,489,200.00. Other
articles/equipment seized include: 174 DVD players, 294 televisions, 52 personal
computers and 260 speakers, equalizer/sub-woofers, and transformers/AVR’s. (Annex
“C”: Table 3) The Legal Division of OMB processed 2,468 administrative complaints,
wherein 9 complaints were against registered CD replicating facilities. OMB filed 22
criminal complaints with the public prosecutor.
From the data available, the OMB’s enforcement efforts have produced at least
one (1) conviction in January 2007.4 The OMB has intensified its provincial campaign
against counterfeit optical media products, which are being smuggled particularly through
the southern part of the country.5
Some significant activities took place in 2007.
On 09 February 2007, the OMB highlighted its 3rd Anniversary by shredding
about two hundred (200) sacks of pirated optical media discs worth about P16,650,000.00
at Camp Aguinaldo. Representatives of the NCIPR, the diplomatic sector and the private
sector were present at the event.
Boosting the anti-piracy campaign, President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo visited the
notorious Quiapo district on 06 March 2007, and in a “town hall” meeting warned Quiapo
traders about their illegal trade. “Piracy is a crime. It’s against the law. That’s why I’m
offering alternative means of livelihood for you and your families,” she told some 50
residents of Barangay 647 on San Agustin Street led by Barangay Chairman Suharto
Buleg.”6 The surprise visit of the President generated national media coverage.
Moreover, on 06 August 2007, thousands of pirated optical discs and two (2)
computer burning towers seized in the Manila suburb of Quiapo were destroyed by
recently elected Mayor Alfredo Lim and OMB Chairman Edu Manzano. The optical discs
included DVDs and VCDs seized by the Philippine National Police on 05 August 2007.
The raid, implemented following an informant’s tip-off, resulted in the arrest of a 29 year
old man who was lodging at the Polly Pinky Lodging House in Quiapo, where he was
reportedly manufacturing hundreds of pirated VCDs and DVDs. The equipment
destroyed was capable of producing more than 8,000 pirated optical discs in 24 hours.
Chairman Manzano said, “the torching of the optical discs and equipment was aimed at
sending a message to the public in Quiapo, a suburb notorious for the manufacture and
distribution of pirated optical discs, that the OMB and the City of Manila are serious
about clamping down on piracy.”7
People vs. Abdula Alonto et al. case (Criminal Case No. 228277-C) for violation of R.A. No. 9239
(Optical Media Act of 2003). See: Table on Convictions (2001-2007).
Newspaper: The Philippine Star Nation A-28, 17 August 2007 (Friday).
Newspaper: Philippine Star, published on 11 March 2007, Front Page/News – page 4.
Motion Picture Association publication (Asia-Pacific Anti-Piracy Update, Issue 04-2007, page 11).
To curb film piracy and help inject new life into a beleaguered local film industry,
Malacañang led efforts to establish a stronger collaboration between the OMB and the
Motion Picture Anti-Film Piracy Council, Inc. (MPAFPCI).8 On 25 October 2007, the
OMB and the MPAFPCI signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU), particularly in
the area of information sharing. The Council is also pursuing its rewards program for
moviegoers who report pirates copying movies in theaters with digital or cell phone
cameras. The Council has awarded from P10,000.00 to P20,000.00 to at least 10 people
since the program began in July 2007.9
The IP Unit- Bureau of Customs (IPU-BOC)
In 2007, the IPU-BOC issued 33 WSD’s and confiscated 1,850,011 pieces of fake
goods and 4 replicating machines with an estimated value of P1,152,735,630.20. (Annex
“D”: Table 4)
One significant development was the seizure of about $2 million worth of digital
versatile disc-replicating equipment, capable of making 400,000 pirated copies a day.
These were intercepted by the BOC on 25 January 2007 for misdeclaration and for
violating provisions of Republic Act No. 9239 (Optical Media Act of 2003). The
smuggled goods, consisting of four “top-of-the-line” machines, video packaging materials
and gadgets used in producing pirated copies, were in two (2) 40-footer and two (2) 20-
footer container vans from Hong Kong, United States and Taiwan.10
According to the Motion Picture Association (MPA), the seized replicating
machines were capable of producing 14 million pirated DVDs per year, generating
potential revenue of US$ 17.5 million. Mr. Mike Ellis, Senior Vice President and
Regional Director, Asia-Pacific of the MPA said, “The MPA and our member companies
congratulate the Bureau of Customs and the Optical Media Board on the seizure of
machines that would have turned out millions of pirated DVDs.”11
On 08 March 2007, WSD’s were issued by the District Collector of the Port of
Manila against the shipments in question for violation of Section 2503 (Undervaluation,
Misclassification and Misdeclaration in Entry) of the Tariff and Customs Code of the
Philippines, as amended by R.A. No. 765112 in relation to R.A. No. 9239. The Seizure
and Forfeiture Proceedings were docketed as S.I. 2007-015, 2007-016 and 2007-017. The
seizure cases are now submitted for resolution.13
Newspaper: Philippine Daily Inquirer H1, 10 December 2007 (Monday).
Manila Standard Today (http://www.manilastandardtoday.com/?page=police1_jan26_2007.
Motion Picture Association News Release, 30 January 2007
An Act to Revitalize and Strengthen the Bureau of Customs Amending for the Purpose Certain Sections
of the Tariff and Customs Code of the Philippines as Amended.
Report of the Bureau of Customs, Internal Inquiry and Prosecution Division, Intellectual Property Unit of
01 October 2007.
Another significant development in the BOC is the participation of Airport
Customs in the campaign against counterfeiting. On 11 January 2007, Airport Customs
police intercepted 22 boxes of pirated DVDs valued at half a million pesos, about to be
shipped from the Manila Domestic Airport for the Visayas and Mindanao. Ninoy Aquino
International Airport Customs Enforcement and Security Service Chief Major Elpidio
Manuel said the discs were made in Malaysia and would have been distributed in Cebu,
Cagayan de Oro, Iloilo and Davao.14 Airport Customs officers are now part of the training
program for IP customs enforcers.
Moreover, the BOC Commissioner has made training on IPR a requirement for all
Customs employees seeking promotions in the organization.
Special Sectoral Campaigns
Software Piracy - Since it started its crackdown against businesses using or
selling illegal software, the “Pilipinas Anti-Piracy Team” (PAPT)15 has confiscated
P189,404,494.00 million worth of illegal software. The PAPT has also made available the
free service of the PAPT Technical Inspection Panel (P-TIP), which aims to assist
companies in determining if the software programs that they are using are licensed or not.
The P-TIP has been trained by the Business Software Alliance to conduct software
systems checks. The PAPT also has an available newly revised website
(www.papt.org.ph), which contains the latest news of the Team’s enforcement actions. It
has also an open link where anyone can report of businesses engaging in software
The Business Software Alliance (BSA) has found the results produced by PAPT
for the past two years as encouraging. In a statement during the 2nd Anniversary of the
PAPT, BSA Director for Anti-Piracy in Asia Mr. Tarun Sawney said, “while piracy rates
in this country were still high, government agencies were now consistently enforcing
intellectual property laws regarding copying of computer programs.17
In 2007, PAPT conducted 55 raids confiscating P121,278,500.00 worth of illegal
software. In 200618 and 200519, 34 raids were conducted by PAPT and confiscated illegal
software with an estimated value of P68,125,994.00.
Newspaper: Malaya, News Page A2, published on 12 January 2007.
The NBI, OMB and PNP, together with the IP Coalition, have banded together to launch the “Pilipinas
Anti-Piracy Team” (PAPT), a campaign that aims to curb software piracy in the Philippines. BSA, the
foremost organization promoting the use of original and licensed software, is supporting the campaign. At
the launch, the five organizations signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) that spelled out the
objectives and action plans of the campaign.
Newspaper: Manila Standard Today B8, 17 September 2007 (Monday).
2006: P55,722,294.00 (22 raids).
2005: P12,403,700.00 (12 raids).
PAPT strengthened its grip against software piracy in the South. In 2007, PAPT
conducted series of raids against business establishments in the South allegedly
distributing and using unlicensed software. The IPRD-NBI raided Cannon Creek Asia
Inc. and Design Editions, both located in Mandaue City, Cebu. The raid resulted to the
seizure of unlicensed software installers and 82 computers loaded with unlicensed
software belonging to Adobe Corporation and Microsoft, Inc. amounting to P9 million.
The OMB raided optical media stalls in Cebu City including Goldisc Digital Multimedia,
Marksman Superbit Shop and YFG Merchandising. The raid resulted to the seizure of 200
sacks of pirated software programs. On the other hand, the PNP-Criminal Investigation
and Detection Group’s Anti-Economic Crimes Task Force raided Clickers Café and Lafia
Internet café in Davao City and Top One Internet Café, Soft Touch Internet Café and
Golden Circle Internet Café in Cebu City. The police were able to seize 86 computers in
Davao and 80 computers in Cebu loaded with pirated software,20 and arrested eight (8)
In addition to the focus on Southern Philippines, an important change in the PAPT
work is the participation of members of the Aviation Security Group (ASG). On 10
August 2007 ASG seized some P10 million worth of DVD’s aboard two cars belonging to
a group of Muslim traders. The DVDs, estimated to be 20,000 pieces, were found in 29
boxes intercepted at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport checkpoint. Most were
pornographic, and some were the latest Hollywood blockbusters still to be shown locally.
ASG Chief Director Atilano Morada also alerted the OMB, which sent one of its officers
to take custody of the seized DVDs that were supposed to be brought through the
Philippines Airlines cargo terminal for shipment and distribution in the Visayas and
The OMB has also strengthened further its partnerships with the private sector. On
01 August 2007, ten (10)23 industry groups have committed to police their ranks against
the use of unlicensed software and intellectual property rights infringement that could
taint the image of the country in the eyes of investors. This was embodied in a manifesto
that these industry associations signed at the Makati Shangri-La Hotel advocating proper
“Software Asset Management” (SAM) through the adoption of model SAM practices.
The signing of the manifesto is part of the public education and awareness campaign of
the Business Software Alliance (BSA), the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), the
Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) and the IP Philippines against the use of unlicensed
Newspaper: Malaya by Jay Chua, 11 August 2007 (Saturday).
The groups that signed the manifesto are Business Processing Association of the Philippines (BPAP),
Contact Center Association of the Philippines (CCAP), Financial Executives Institute of the Philippines
(FINEX), Philippine Software Industry Association (PSIA), Animation Council of the Philippines Inc.,
Cebu Software Development Industry Association Inc. (CebuSoft), Medical Transcription Industry
Association of the Philippines Inc. (MITIAPI), Philippine Internet Services Association, Association of
Consulting Civil Engineers of the Philippines (ACCEP) and the Association of Government Internal
Newspaper: Business Mirror A2, 02 August 2007 (Thursday).
Moreover, BSA forged a partnership with the Cebu Software Development
Industry Association (Cebusoft) in October 2007, aimed to strengthen the drive against
unlicensed software in Cebu through the Follow SAM program. “The partnership with
Cebusoft is very significant in our campaign to promote respect for intellectual property
rights and use of licensed software throughout the country,” stated Mr. Roland Chan,
BSA Director for Marketing in Asia.25
Cable Piracy - On 16 June 2006, the NTC and Intellectual Property Philippines
signed a MOA seeking to resolve their respective jurisdictions in hearing and trying cases
related to cable piracy. A public hearing on the Implementing Rules and Regulations
(IPR) for the MOA was held on 21 February 2007.
On 02 April 2007, the NTC and IP Philippines approved and formalized the IRR
of the MOA. The Cable and Satellite Broadcasting Association of Asia (CASBAA) and
its members “warmly welcome the prospect of effective action by the Philippine
government to protect intellectual property rights in the broadcasting industry.”26 The
IRR provides for a means to resolve complaints involving intellectual property issues in
the cable industry. This is a result of successful public-private partnerships the IP
Philippines formed in the cable industry.
On 13 July 2007, The Federation of International Cable TV Association of the
Philippines (FICAP) filed a Petition (Prohibition with Prayer for Preliminary Injunction
and Temporary Restraining Order)27 with RTC Branch 95, Quezon City (Judge Henri
Jean Paul B. Inting). On 03 September 2007, the Court issued an Order denying the TRO
for lack of merit and setting the case on 25 October 2007 for the hearing of the
preliminary injunction. The continuation of the hearing of the main case was held on 31
03 January 2006, Complainants (Discovery Communications-Europe, National
Geographic Channel, AXN Holdings, Turner Entertainment Networks, Asia, ESPN Sp.
et. al.) filed 12 separate complaints for violation of R. A. No. 8293 against Estrellita T.
Juliano-Tamano, et. al. On 21 November 2006, a Resolution was issued by the
investigating prosecutor finding probable cause against respondents Estrellita T. Juliano-
Tamano et. al. for violation of R.A. No. 8293 (Section 177 in relation to Section 217), and
filed the corresponding 94 Informations with the RTC, Cotabato City. 08 May 2007,
Respondents filed a Petition for Review with the Secretary of Justice.
On 05 July 2007, the Secretary of Justice issued a Resolution (Resolution No. 498,
series of 2007), which reversed and set-aside the Joint Resolution issued by the
investigating prosecutor on 21 November 2006. The resolution directed the investigating
prosecutor (with leave of court) to immediately cause the dismissal of the Informations
for violation of R.A. No. 8293 filed against the respondents.
Newspaper: Manila Bulletin, 11 October 2007 (Thursday).
Newspaper: Manila Bulletin B5, 20 April 2007 (Friday).
Civil Case No. Q-07-60764 FICAP vs. NTC & IPO)
The deadline for the submission of Memorandum re: Preliminary Inju
On 24 July 2007, Complainants filed a Motion for Reconsideration. On 11
September 2007, RTC Branch 14 Cotabato City issued an Order dismissing the 94
Informations filed against Estrellita Juliano-Tamano et al. On 10 October 2007, Acting
DOJ Secretary Agnes VST Devanadera issued a Resolution granting the Motion for
Reconsideration (reversing and setting aside Resolution No. 498, series of 2007). The
resolution also directed the Chief State Prosecutor to re-file the Informations and to report
the action taken hereon within 10 days from receipt.
On 08 November 2007, Estrellita Juliano-Tamano filed a Motion for
Reconsideration. The Complainants filed their Reply on 14 November 2007. The DOJ
will file a motion to transfer the venue from Cotabato City to Manila.
Meanwhile, in Congress, lawmakers filed a bill to penalize illegal cable
connection. On 26 July 2007, Representative Joseph A. Santiago (Lone District,
Catanduanes) filed House Bill No. 1409 (The Anti Cable Television and Cable Internet
Pilferage Act of 2007). The bill was referred to the Congressional Committee on
Information and Communications Technology on 07 August 2007.
In addition, on 15 November 2007, House Bill No. 3075 authored by
Representative Narciso D. Santiago III and Representative Marcelino R. Teodoro was
also filed. The bill aims to protect the Cable Television Industry from unauthorized
connections to existing cable television facilities that allow illegal recording,
reproduction, distribution, importation or sale of intercepted or received cable television
system signals. Dubbed as the “Anti-Cable Tapping Act of 2007”, it provides for
imprisonment of not less than six months but not more than one year or a fine of not less
than P5,000.00 but not more than P10,000.00 or both.29
III. Copyright Protection: New Strategies for Access to Knowledge
Presidential directive: Vigorously enforce copyright protection of printed
materials. However, formulate and implement effective strategies that would
provide affordable access to copyrighted works, especially textbooks, such as
copyright licensing and establishment of copyright collection societies or
Collection Societies and Reproduction Rights Organizations
Without letting up on enforcement of copyright, the thrust of GRP policy is to
complement conventional enforcement with other strategies of protecting and promoting
copyright in the country. Creating collection societies or collection management
organizations for the copyright sector, particularly in the publishing industry, is a strategic
goal of the GRP.
In 2007, IP Philippines and the NBDB facilitated the creation of a collection
society for book authors and publishers called the Filipinas Copyright Licensing Society
(FILCOLS). On 20 April 2007, the Book Development Association of the Philippines
(BDAP), an association of local book publishers and book distributors, approved a soft-
loan amounting to Five Hundred Thousand Pesos (P500,000.00) for FILCOLS.
By: Michelle Sapnu, PRID (http://www.congress.gov.ph/press/index.php?pg=details&pressid=2043).
It is envisioned that, by 2008, there will be only one collective management
society for authors and publishers, led by duly-elected representatives from various
associations and stakeholders of the book publishing industry, which will be endorsed by
the NBDB and IP Philippines to the International Federation of Reproduction Rights
On 21 January 2008, the FILCOLS was launched and its officers inducted at the
Pasig Room, Valle Verde Country Club, Pasig City. The Director General of the IP
Philippines led the induction rights.
Institutions of Higher Education have already expressed their interest in entering
into copyright licensing agreements with FILCOLS.
In a separate, but related development, the NBDB has spearheaded the crafting of
copyright guidelines that can be used by higher educational institutions and by FILCOLS
at the proper time. These guidelines include the application of the “fair use” principle in
schools, such as policies on classroom use of copyrighted materials in course packs, and
the use of copyrighted material in multi-media formats, among others. The largest
umbrella organization of private schools, the Coordinating Council for Private
Educational Associations (COCOPEA), has expressed keen interest in implementing
these guidelines and entering into copyright licenses with FILSCOLS.
IP Philippines has completed the initial assessment of these draft guidelines, and
remains in constant dialogue with the NBDB. As soon as a local collective management
organization (CMO) becomes operational in 2008, these guidelines will be pilot-tested in
selected colleges and universities before these are replicated in other higher education
Foreign publishing houses are being encouraged to participate actively in this
endeavor. In a meeting with Ms. Patricia L. Judd, Executive Director of the International
Copyright Enforcement and Trade Policy of the Association of American Publishers, Inc.
(AAP), the Director General of IP Philippines elaborated on the government’s strategic
thrusts for the copyright sector.30
Ms. Judd informed the Director General that AAP is “neutral” on copyright
licensing and the establishment of a Reprographic Rights Organizations (RRO) and is not
in a position to endorse any particular organization, and that its publishers do not prefer
licensing as a business model. Moreover, she revealed that although licensing and the
formation of RROs has generated a lot of interest and talk among their publishers, it is
potential for abuse by students in copying licensed materials. She also requested that the
issue on digital downloading of copyrighted materials (downloading to PDAs of
textbooks in PDF format/mobile downloading of journals, references) be discussed in the
NCIPR since this is a huge issue of the International Federation of the Phonographic
22 January 2008
In relation to book piracy, in March 2007,31 the IP Philippines and its partner
organizations discussed programs to address book piracy in the country. The World
Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) organized the international conference under
the theme, “WIPO Sub-Regional Roundtable on Copyright-Based Business: Authorship,
Publishing and Access to Knowledge”. Around fifty (50) local authors, publishers and
organizations in the publishing industry, which include delegates from six (6) IP offices
in Southeast Asia, participated in the event.
Aside from enforcement, IP Philippines has been addressing the issue of book
piracy at the policy level. The Office is institutionalizing its Copyright Support Services
Unit, which includes facilitating the establishment of collection societies for writers and
other artists similar to what Filipino Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers
(FILSCAP) has done for musicians. To do this, IP Philippines established strong ties with
the NBDB and the Unyon ng mga Manunulat ng Pilipinas (UMPIL) (Writers Union of the
Philippines) and other writers’ groups. IP Philippines sponsored basic orientation
seminars on copyright for UMPIL members and other writers’ groups. The Alab Art
Space in the IP Philippines building was opened last year, which expresses full support of
the Office for writers and artists.32
Meanwhile, the issue of photocopying or reproduction of copyrighted works has
been getting attention in the Philippine Congress. On 08 August 2007, Representative
Rufus B. Rodriguez (Cagayan de Oro, 2nd District) filed House Bill No. 1949 (An Act
Declaring It Unlawful To Illegally Reproduce Copyrighted Books And Printed Materials
Through Photocopying, Duplicating, Printing Or Similar Means Without The Written
Consent Of The Copyright Owner Whether The Publisher Or The Author Or Both
Amending For the Purpose R.A. 8293).
IV. Judicial Reforms, Adjudication and Alternatives: A Shifting Tide
Presidential directive: Maintain appropriate coordination with the Judiciary in
ensuring that courts are adequately skilled in intellectual property cases, and in
consultation with the Judiciary and Congress, explore the designation or creation of
Special Intellectual Property and International Trade Courts
Special IP and International Trade Courts
In 2007, the tide has shifted in the Supreme Court and the judiciary in favor of
specialization among commercial court judges in IP litigation. In November 2006, IP
Philippines partnered with the Philippine Judicial Academy (PHILJA) and the Supreme
Court in organizing a 5-day workshop on IP law for commercial court judges.
Newly appointed Supreme Court Chief Justice Ronaldo Puno delivered a major
policy speech on law and economics in 2007. He said, “This partnership between and
among the Supreme Court, PHILJA and the IP Philippines seeks not only continuing
judicial education, but appropriate training for court personnel, whether stenographers or
sheriffs, with the end in view of producing bench books for judges and manuals for court
personnel when dealing with intellectual property cases. This partnership likewise seeks
to achieve an efficient case monitoring system for intellectual property disputes, from the
IP Philippines/trial court level, the appellate courts, and the Supreme Court.”
28-29 March 2007, EDSA Shangri-La, Mandaluyong City.
AGIP News: 4301, 20 April 2007.
In 2007, two (2) commercial court judges, six (6) DOJ prosecutors and one (1)
lawyer of the PhilJA were sent to foreign training.33
In 2008, the PhilJA and IP Philippines will organize a follow-up training for
commercial court judges who attended the “Advanced Course on Intellectual Property
Law for Commercial Court Judges” conducted in November 2006, which was a four-day
course attended by twenty-six (26) judges, wherein 9 of them were from National Capital
In ongoing bilateral cooperation dialogue with the USPTO, there is a proposal to
conduct two (2) special training seminars for commercial court judges focusing on IP
cases. The first will be in April and the second in September 2008. These programs will
be institutionalized this year.
Recognizing the growing importance of IP, the Chief Justice appointed on 27 July
2007 the Director General of IP Philippines as member of the Sub-Committee on
Commercial Courts under the Committee on the Revision of the Rules of Court.34
As of 03 January 2008, the database of the Office of the Court Administrator,
Supreme Court shows that there are 509 IPR violations cases pending nationwide, with
391 cases in the courts of the NCR. The following courts have the largest volume of
cases: Manila-Branch 46 (92), Quezon City-Branch 90 (89) and Manila-Branch 24 (76).
The advocacy for specialized IP training for judges and for special IP courts is
gaining ground. The leadership in the Supreme Court projects an “activist” Court that
appreciates the relationships between and among different disciplines, including IP and
economics. Although in 2005, the volume of IP cases pending in the courts of law did not
justify the designation or creation of special IP courts, the recognized value of such
courts, at least in Metro Manila, will most likely change the situation in 2008. With the
tremendously improved relations among IP Philippines, the Supreme Court and the
PhilJA, the prospects for some form of IP Court (whether IP alone or with international
trade cases) are very positive.
Promoting Mediation in the Courts
The NCIPR has recommended the inclusion of the IP violations under the Court
Annexed Mediation (CAM) and Judicial Dispute Resolution (JDR) programs.
One of the priority objectives of the Supreme Court is to decongest court dockets,
and for this purpose, issued Administrative Circular No. 20-02 dated 24 April 2002 to
establish a court-referred mediation system, which provides for Mediation as one
expeditious mode of alternative dispute resolution.
(1) Global Intellectual Property Academy Enforcement of IPR’s Program in Virginia, USA on 27-30
March 2007; (2) Seminar on IPR Enforcement for the Judiciary and Public Prosecutor in Bangkok,
Thailand on 06-08 June 2007; and (3) Workshop on Digital Copyright and Copyright Collective
Management in Bangkok, Thailand on 16-19 July 2007.
Supreme Court Memorandum Order No. 29-2007, 27 July 2007.
Considering that amicable settlement or of submission to arbitration is often
reached by the parties in trademark, unfair competition and copyright cases, it is highly
recommended that the civil aspect of violation of Republic Act No. 8293 be also
included, in CAM and JDR programs, together with B.P. 22, quasi-offenses, estafa, libel
and theft. (Annex “E”: The cases covered by CAM and JDR)
Department of Justice’s Task Force on Anti-Intellectual Property Piracy (DOJ-TFAIPP)
In 2007, the DOJ-TFAIPP had an inventory of 1,172 pending complaints. By year
end, the Task Force had disposed close to one half (574) and had 598 cases carried over
to 2008. Of the complaints disposed, 96 were dismissed, 470 complaints were filed in
court, and 8 motions for reconsideration were denied. (Annex “F”).
Significantly, the Department issued Order No. 937 on 12 November 2007
assigning twenty (20) prosecutors to the TFAIPP in addition to the prosecutors designated
under Department Order No. 595 dated 11 August 2006 and Department Order No. 823
dated 12 October 2006. Currently, the TFAIPP has now thirty-two (32) prosecutors with
the sole objective of eliminating the backlog from 2007 within 2008 and keep the dockets
As reported to the IP Philippines, prosecutions of IPR cases have resulted in sixty-
four (64) convictions from 2001 to 2008, thirty-nine (39) of which were handed down in
2005-2006. Last year, only one conviction has been recorded. (Annex “G”: Table 5)
However, this cannot be taken as an accurate reflection of the state of prosecution efforts
in the country. Gathering accurate data on cases has been difficult in 2007 due to the lack
of cooperation from lawyers and agents of IP owners. IP Philippines will be taking
institutional measures that will, hopefully, allow access to information about cases filed in
court by law firms and other agents.
Administrative Adjudication in IP Philippines: A Viable Alternative
IP Philippines has been improving systems and processes at its Bureau of Legal
Affairs (BLA) to better serve IP owners as a viable alternative venue to secure redress for
IP violations. The BLA has original jurisdiction, concurrent with the courts of law, over
For Intellectual Property Violation cases (IPV), the BLA resolved 26 IPV cases in
2007, 17 of which are cases from its backlog. The current turn around time for resolving
IPV cases is at 24 months compared to the average of 36 to 48 months 3 years ago. For
cases filed starting June 2007, the BLA has committed to dispose of IPV cases within
twelve (12) months from the filing of a complaint. To meet this target, the rules of
procedure for litigating IPR violations will be amended by the second quarter of 2008.
Capacity Building/Training – Intellectual Property Rights Protection (IPROTECT)
In 2007, IP Philippines organized four (4) trainings under its IPROTECT
• 09 October 2007: Levi Strauss & Co. Brand Protection in the Philippines at
the IP Philippines Multi-Purpose Hall, Makati City
• 23 August 2007: Pfizer Product Identification Seminar, Palm Grove, Rockwell
Club, Makati City
• 03 April 2007: AstraZeneca Anti-Counterfeiting Seminar, Palm Grove,
Rockwell Club, Makati City
• 20-21 March 2007: National Workshop on Counterfeiting and Border
Measures, EDSA Shangri-La Hotel, Mandaluyong City
The IPROTECT trainings mentioned above benefited 183 government personnel
and 38 participants from the private sector.
Moreover, 36 members of the NCIPR were sent to foreign seminars and trainings
last year: 2 commercial court judges; 6 prosecutors from the DOJ-TFAIPP; 6 policemen
from PNP; 8 personnel from the IPU-BOC; 4 employees from the Intellectual Property
Philippines; 2 personnel from the Department of Health, NBI, OMB; and 1 participant
each from the PhilJA, The National Library, and the local government’s of Makati and
These training opportunities were a result of stronger ties between Association of
Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) and other IP offices and WIPO, and bilateral
agreements between the IP Philippines and the USPTO and EPO.35
Other Legal Strategies for Law Enforcement
To strengthen the drive against IPR infringement the NCIPR is seriously studying
the legal basis and the proper procedure for filing criminal, civil and administrative
charges against establishment owner’s (such as malls) whose lessees sell counterfeit
(1) 3rd Global Congress on Combating Counterfeiting and Piracy in Geneva, Switzerland on 30-31
(2) Global Intellectual Property Academy Enforcement of IPR Program in Virginia, USA on 27-30 March
(3) Seminar on Capacity Building to Implement Anti-Counterfeiting and Piracy Initiative in Ha Noi,
Vietnam on 31 May – 01 June 2007.
(4) Seminar on IPR Enforcement for the Judiciary and Public Prosecutor in Bangkok, Thailand on 06-08
(5) Workshop on the Enforcement of IPR in the Digital Era in Nha Trang, Vietnam on 04-06 July 2007.
(6) Workshop on IP Enforcement and Combating Trade in Counterfeit Product in Bangkok, Thailand on 10-
12 July 2007.
(7) Workshop on Digital Copyright and Copyright Collective Management in Bangkok, Thailand on 16-19
(8) Training on IP for APEC Countries in Tokyo, Japan on 09-29 September 2007.
(9) Special Course: The Enforcement of Copyrights and Related Rights in Tokyo, Japan on 22 October – 02
(10) Workshop on Effective Practices in the Border Enforcement of IPR in Bangkok, Thailand on 12-16
(11) Workshop on Effective Enforcement of IPR in Beijing, China on 13-14 December 2007.
Consultations were conducted with some representatives of mall owners and
private sector partners. In one of the Public-Private Partnership Council for IPR (P3CIPR)
meeting, a checklist of requirements for filing of cases and inquest procedures were
distributed to the attendees for their comments.
On its part, OMB continued surveillance of several malls and business
establishments where pirated and counterfeited goods are being sold. Evidence is being
gathered through these activities. Some mall-building managers were informed in writing
that pirated and counterfeited goods are being sold in their establishment and were
informed to take the appropriate action.
On software piracy, the CIDG-AFCCD of the PNP has sent out letters to some
business establishments in Cebu City, Davao City and Metro Manila that have been
reported to the PAPT website for alleged use of software without proper licenses.36 The
letters also advised businesses to conduct necessary system checks in order to determine
the legitimacy of their software licenses. Advisory letters have also been sent to several
mall-owners encouraging them to police their establishments from tenants that sell pirated
IP Philippines supports House Bill No. 1033 (An Act Penalizing Mall and Store
Owners Engaging in the Sale of Contraband Products) filed by Representative Jose G.
Solis (2nd District, Sorsogon) on 11 July 2007. The bill was referred to the Committee on
Trade and Industry on 01 August 2007. Smuggled and pirated goods not only distort
normal pricing mechanisms but also affect other market forces that contribute to the
decline of the local economy. This bill seeks to clamp down on these illegal activities by
penalizing store/stall owners who engage in the selling of contraband products. It also
provides penalties for mall-owners who tolerate the selling of contraband products by
Local governments play an important role in IPR enforcement, and in general,
fostering a local environment attractive for businesses and investments.
Moreover, IP Philippines, in partnership with the IP Coalition of IP owners, has
been implementing the LGU Ordinance project since 2005. As of today, there are eleven
(11) local government units that have IP ordinances (Makati City, Quezon City,
Muntinlupa City, Navotas City, Cebu City, Iloilo City, Davao City, Baguio City, Naga
City, Balanga Bataan and Tuba Benguet).
V. Policy and Legislation: A Fresh Approach
Presidential directive: Continue to provide the Executive and the Legislative
Branches of government with policy and legislative proposals in order to update the
country’s intellectual property laws, ensuring that these are in compliance with the
country’s existing international obligations embodied in treaties and other
The Philippine IP Policy Strategy (PIPPS)
The Philippine Congress has shown signs of high interest in IP related legislation.
There are more members now, perhaps due to their professional backgrounds and relative
youth, have been publicly mentioning IP issues and filing bills in relation to IP. This is
timely for the Philippine IP Policy Strategy crafted by IP Philippines with its
In November 2007, IP Philippines launched the PIPPS to ensure that the
Philippine IP system promotes innovation. President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo endorsed
the PIPPS in the National Innovation Summit. Inventors, entrepreneurs, artists,
policymakers and experts in the fields of science and technology, and the academe
cooperated in crafting the PIPPS.
The PIPPS strategy is a living document that will undergo further improvements.
It covers eight sectors representing the country’s IP assets and approaches to realize the
identified objectives. These are public health; patent reform; universities and research and
development institutions (RDI); biodiversity and genetic resources; indigenous
knowledge systems and practices (IKSP); folklore and geographical indications; small-
and medium-sized enterprises; copyright and other creative industries and; institutional
capacity-building and IP enforcement.
The objectives of the PIPPS are as follows:
• To identify key concerns and issues for each policy area
• To recommend strategies required to address the key concerns
• To align the Philippine IP Policy Strategy with the economic and development
goals of the country as embodied in the Medium-Term Philippine
Development Plan 2004-2010
• To align the Philippine IP Policy Strategy with global developments in IP
• To realize the vision of IP Philippines of fostering a creative and competitive
Philippines that values, nurtures and uses IP for national development.
The PIPPS, which began as the National IP Policy and Strategy project in January
2006, was initiated and funded by the IP Philippines. It was created to “take stock” of the
country’s IP assets, as well as craft and implement strategy to harness and use IP assets in
realizing national development goals.
The PIPPS is a fresh approach in advocating a legislative agenda. The document
itself and the broad, participative process behind it will serve as a unifying theme for the
many sectors affected by IP. Moreover, the growing interest among legislators can be
organized into an influential caucus of IP champions.
The Internet Treaties (WIPO Copyright Treaty [WCT] & WIPO Performances &
Phonograms Treaty [WPPT])
On 03 July 2007, Senator Edgardo J. Angara filed Senate Bill No. 880 (An Act
Amending Certain Provisions of Republic Act No. 8293 or the Intellectual Property Code
of the Philippines and for Other Purposes). The bill was read on First Reading and
referred to the Committee on Trade and Commerce on 04 September 2007.
IP Philippines will support the bill, which seeks to amend the Copyright
provisions of Republic Act No. 8293 to incorporate the provisions of the WIPO Internet
In October 2002, the GRP acceded to the WCT and WPPT. The accession made
the provisions of the treaties part of the laws of our land. However, IP Philippines is of
the view that the amendments will make our organic laws one of the most modern in the
The Cybercrime Bill
The following bills are pending before the House of Representatives:
House Bill No. 00190 (An Act Defining Cybercrime, Providing for Prevention,
Suppression and Imposition of Penalties Therefor and for Other Purpose), which is
authored by Representative Juan Edgardo M. Angara, was filed on 02 July 2007. The bill
was referred to the Committee on Justice on 24 July 2007.
House Bill No. 01323 (An Act Preventing and Penalizing Computer Fraud,
Abuses and Other Cyber-Related Fraudulent Activities, and Creating for the Purpose the
Cyber-Crime Investigation and Coordinating Center, Prescribing Its Powers and
Functions, and Appropriating Funds Therefor), which is authored by Representative Eric
D. Singson, was filed on 25 July 2007. The bill was referred to the Committee on Justice
on 07 August 2007.
The Affordable Medicines Bill
The bill seeks to amend Republic Act No. 8293, otherwise known as the
Intellectual Property Code of the Philippines (IP Code), to protect public health by
creating an environment that will lower the prices of medicines through increased
competition among drug companies and by providing the government with better policy
tools to significantly influence the supply and demand of medicines.
IP Philippines’ role was to ensure TRIPS compliant amendments and consistent
with DOHA. As to be expected, there may be honest differences in opinion or positions
regarding this subject; but it is of the considered position of the Philippine government
that these amendments are TRIPS compliant.
The Senate and the House of Representatives are in bicameral conference for the
purpose of consolidating the Senate and House versions of this proposed legislation.
Accession to the Madrid Protocol
The IP Philippines is studying the benefits and the legal, technical and
administrative implications of accession to the Madrid Protocol and other international
agreements concerning trademarks like the Nice Agreement on the international
classification of goods and services and the Vienna Agreement on the classification of
Moreover, as part of its process in coming up with a legislative agenda, IP
Philippines will also participate in the international meetings on the Patent Law Treaty
(PLT), and the Substantive Patent Law Treaty (SPLT). IP Philippines is also studying the
ways by which Geographical Indications (GIs) can be protected in the country, including
the benefits and appropriateness of protecting it under a separate GI system or registering
it as a collective mark.
VI. Inter-Agency Work and Public-Private Partnerships: Firm Foundations
Presidential directive: The DTI, through IPO, shall (A) continue to coordinate
inter-agency efforts against piracy and counterfeiting; (B) maintain a database and
enforcement monitoring system; (C) consolidate information and reports from other
agencies; and (D) submit quarterly progress reports to the President, and provide copies
to the Executive Secretary and the Cabinet Secretary.
The Secretariat for Intellectual Property Inter-Agency Coordination (SIPIAC),
which was formed by IP Philippines under the direct supervision of the Director General,
organized 21 meetings for the NCIPR and 7 meetings for the P3CIPR, since it was
created in 2005.
Moreover, the Secretariat organized the NCIPR Strategic Planning Workshop in
Whiterock Resort Hotel, Subic, Zambales on 06-08 December 2007.
The database was launched on 22 February 2007 during the 1st P3CIPR Forum
for 2007 at the Intellectual Property Philippines Multi-Purpose Hall. Officials from the
government sector (DOJ, DTI, DILG, BOC, PNP, NBI, NBDB) and representatives from
the private sector (law firms, Microsoft Philippines, cable association, IP coalition,
software industry, Book Development Association of the Philippines, Philippine Chamber
of Pharmaceutical Industry) attended the activity. Representatives from the American
Embassy in Manila, participated in the event as observers.
On 19 December 2006, the IP Philippines turned over the system to the end-users
(DOJ, BOC, OMB, NBI and PNP). Under the instrument of acceptance, IP Philippines
will provide the said government agencies with the system after the sign-off of the
instrument of acceptance, and the end-user agency ensures that the system is always used
and the database that supports it is continually populated. IP Philippines shall also
regularly monitor the proper use of the system and shall be responsible for its
maintenance. For the meantime, the database will be used by the DOJ, BOC, OMB, NBI,
PNP and IP Philippines. However, the plan is to include in the network courts handling IP
The NCIPR Secretariat has cultivated constructive relationships with the private
sector. Quarterly meetings of the Public-Private Partnership Council for IPR are held at IP
Philippines. This regular dialogues provide a venue for information sharing, following up
operational matters, policy debate, and joint projects for public information and
education. This Council has been institutionalized just like the NCIPR, and together they
form stable mechanisms for dialogue and coordination, laying a firm foundation for
VII. International Cooperation: Regional and Bilateral Strategies
As part of the national program to improve the level of IPR protection in the
Philippines, and the appreciation of the benefits of IPR protection, in January 2007, IP
Philippines had bilateral meetings with the officials of IP Australia, USPTO, IP
Department of Hong Kong (HKIPD), EPO, and met with officials/representatives of
private associations (Motion Picture Association, International Confederation of Societies
of Authors and Composers, International Federation of Reproduction Rights
The GRP continued to strengthen its bilateral relations with strategic partners. In
his visit to the Philippines on 04 September 2007, Mr. David A. Katz of the USTR (then
Director for Southeast Asia and Pacific Affairs, Office of the United States Trade
Representative, Executive Office of the President, United States of America) attended the
NCIPR meeting. Mr. Katz expressed his gratitude to the members of the NCIPR for all
the efforts the group extended in combating counterfeiting in the country. He emphasized
that the combined IPR enforcement efforts of the NCIPR are greatly appreciated. He also
assured the inter-agency group that every submission of the GRP is thoroughly read by
On 17 October 2007, the Director General of the IP Philippines presided over the
US-ASEAN Business Council Meeting. The meeting facilitated a dialogue between US
businesses and GRP government officials to boost investment and trade in the country.
Council members also met with top officials of the IP Philippines and Mr. Eduardo B.
Manzano, Chairman of the OMB.
Moreover, as part of its ongoing trade and investment framework agreement
process, officials of the USTR (Ms. Barbara Weisel, Assistant USTR for Southeast Asia
and the Pacific and Ms. Rachel Bae, Director for IPR and Innovation) and the USPTO
(Mr. Peter N. Fowler, Senior Counsel, Office of Enforcement) recently met with the
Director General of the IP Philippines. During the meeting, the officials shared significant
information pertaining to intellectual property rights in relation to strengthening bilateral
cooperation on trade and investment.38
Significantly, the IP Philippines hosted the 4th Heads of Intellectual Property
Offices Conference (HIPOC) 2007 in partnership with the European Patent Office (EPO)
at the Peninsula Manila with close to 100 local and foreign delegates and the highest
number of IP Office heads in attendance last 13-14 November. The international
conference, themed “Addressing IP Needs of the Future”, builds on the HIPOC meeting
in Singapore on addressing growing workload and office modernization. The common
objective is to restore that delicate balance in the IP system to ensure it promotes
innovation, making it relevant to our people and spur socio-economic development.
Considering that IP is of major importance in the international arena and has been
a primary concern of developed, developing, and least developed countries, the
Philippines will maintain its presence in the international community, strengthen relations
with its fellow ASEAN Member Countries, contribute to the development of ASEAN as a
formidable bloc in the community of nations, and explore partnerships, cooperation
programs, and provision of technical assistance to non-ASEAN developing and least
23 January 2008.
Thus, the IP Philippines will continue to participate in international fora such as
the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation-IPR Experts Group (APEC-IPEG) and the
ASEAN Working Group on IP Cooperation (AWGIPC) as a vehicle to advance the
nation’s interests and promote the development of ASEAN as a strong force in the
international community; take the lead in the establishment of an ASEAN Design Filing
System for the benefit of nationals of ASEAN Member Countries and promote
harmonization; and coordinate with the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO)
and high-achieving IP offices for the development of cooperation with and technical
assistance programs to non-ASEAN developing and least developed countries.
RP-US Trade Investment Council (TIC) meetings on IPR
On 09 May 2007, the IP Philippines Director General attended the U.S. - R.P.
Trade Investment Council (TIC) Meeting conducted at the Executive Conference Room
of the Department of Trade and Industry, Makati City. IPR was one of the items in the
agenda, wherein the following matters were discussed: U.S. Special 301 Announcement,
IPR Action Plan, PGMA’s November 2006 Decree on IPR, Update on the Philippines
enforcement action and prosecutions and capacity building.
Bilateral Cooperation Agreements
On 27 January 2007, IP Philippines and USPTO signed a MOU on cooperation
activities on matters related to the acquisition, utilization and protection of IPR in both
countries. The MOU is aimed at improving the administration of IP protection systems,
the effectiveness of legal protection for, and use of, IP, and developing professional skills
through information sharing and exchange and capacity building.
Significantly, two (2) patent examiners from the IP Philippines Bureau of Patents
attended the USPTO Foreign Examiner-in-Residence (FEIR) pilot program. The pilot
program focused on biotechnology and is modeled after the USPTO’s Patent Training
Academy curriculum for new examiners. It started in September 2007 and was completed
in January 2008.
In September 2006, IP Philippines and EPO signed a MOU to strengthen technical
cooperation on IPR. With these cooperative agreements, our strategic partnership with
EPO and USPTO have gone beyond enforcement strategies, it now includes capacity-
building for patent examiners in biotechnology, strategies for commercialization of
patented technologies, and raising public awareness and education on the importance of
IP in today’s knowledge economy. These technical cooperation agreements are clear
recognition of the importance of IP to economic development and growth.
CONCLUSION: SUSTAINING THE GAINS
Much has changed in the Philippines’ IPR regime since 2005 when IP Philippines
took the lead as coordinator and oversight agency for the country’s IP system. Closer
inter-government agency coordination, high media visibility, controversial debates over
legislative proposals, partnerships with the private sector, sustained law enforcement
operations, expanded information and education efforts, including training, have all
contributed to creating a more favorable environment for IPR protection in the country.
This positive development was recognized by the country’s trading partners,
particularly the United States and the European Union in their own review processes of
IPR protection worldwide in 2006 and 2007. To some extent, the Philippines and IP
Philippines have become useful models in the cooperation programs of the EPO and
USPTO with the ASEAN and with developing countries.
It is no exaggeration to state that in all the components of the Action Plan, except
perhaps for judicial adjudication, the improvements are tremendous. We say “perhaps”
for judicial adjudication because of the difficulty of gathering information and data about
the cases pending in the courts. If lawyers and agents of IP owners were more
cooperative, we believe we will have a clearer picture of the situation and act accordingly.
To address this situation, IP Philippines will amend its criteria for registering patent and
trademark agents by including updated case inventories from lawyers and agents. More
than enough time was given to IP practitioners to cooperate with the government. Now,
it’s time for regulatory measures to encourage them to cooperate.
The judiciary and the prosecution arm of the government, after two years of laying
the foundations through good relations and confidence building, training programs and
advocacy, are going to make significant strides this 2008. The partnership for IP with the
Supreme Court and the PHILJA will have a breakthrough this 2008, with institutionalized
and systematic capacity building and, if plans proceed well, some form of a specialized IP
court – if it really will improve the adjudication of IP cases. For this, IP Philippines is
commissioning a study with PHILJA that will include an analysis of the Thai Central IP
and International Trade Court and its viability in the Philippines.
Among all the seven components of the Action Plan, the fact is judicial
adjudication is the most complex and difficult area for reform and change. Enforcement,
public information and education, policy reform and the other components are
progressing steadily, even dramatically. To be sure, the legislative mill grinds slowly; not
however out of complexity, but due to the very nature of the legislative process in a
Presidential system of government. Of course, the realities in the political landscape at a
given time shape Congress’ legislative priorities.
Yet, the number and quality of bills being filed in Congress that pertain to IP is
impressive and shows a growing consciousness of the importance of IP among legislators,
particularly the new members of the House of Representatives. A strategic move of IP
Philippines this year is to organize an “IP caucus” of legislators in Congress and to
provide them technical support when it comes to pushing bills about IP. The Philippine IP
Policy Strategy will serve as the unifying theme for legislators and stakeholders.
Concerning enforcement, it is safe to say that the enforcement agencies have
established and even accelerated their momentum. Enforcement operations yielded close
to 3 Billion Pesos worth of fake goods in 2007, that’s double the haul of 2006 and higher
than the total of goods seized in 2005 and 2006.
More significant than the higher figures in enforcement operations is the addition
of other law enforcement units engaged in IPR enforcement, namely the Aviation
Security Group (ASG) of the PNP and the Airport Customs units. IPR enforcement is
gaining ground within the law enforcement agencies, hence, adding forces in the anti-
piracy and counterfeiting campaign.
Like enforcement, public information and education has its own momentum now
that will carry on this 2008. With mainstreaming of IP education in the educational
system, solid foundation will be built this year for a real change in mindsets among the
youth and within campuses of schools.
The same can be said about public- private partnerships institutionalized through
the Public-Private Partnership Council and other annual projects of IP Philippines.
International cooperation has also taken a significant turn the past year, with IP
Philippines playing an active role in ASEAN and APEC, strengthening bilateral
cooperation agreements with the EPO, USPTO and WIPO. The increase in credibility of
the Philippines in different international and regional fora is a result of its enhanced IP
regime and the recognition given to that fact by trading partners like the United States,
Japan and Europe. Recognition has allowed the IP Philippines to put forth the case for
harmonization and best practices in ASEAN and APEC. Admittedly, this credibility is at
a delicate stage of evolution that can be washed away easily by a loss of prestige.
GRP has also never hesitated to cooperate and to listen to its trading partners,
especially the United States, and within the parameters of its sovereign rights,
accommodated the views of the U.S government and its constituents.
It is easy to find fault, flaws and problems in the state of the IPR protection in the
country and to belittle the GRP’s efforts to strengthen the IP system. But in evaluating
progress, one must take a comprehensive perspective and give allowance for long term
goals, and not just immediate benefits. On the whole, is there a strong commitment from
the country’s government to eradicate piracy and counterfeiting and is it on the right
It is unquestionable that the GRP has made impressive progress on all fronts
against IPR violations for the past three years. Although there are real problems and
challenges that still have to be tackled, the GRP has shown and continues to show the
kind of political commitment that will, in due time, curb piracy and counterfeiting. On
this basis alone, and not whether the problem of piracy is solved or whether one
component of its Action Plan fails to satisfy one industry or interest group, the
Philippines should be removed from the Watch List.
PNP-IPU Enforcement Performance
NO. OF QUANTITY ESTIMATED
MONTH SEARCH VALUE
WARRANT Boxes/ (Php)
S SERVED Sacks
January 33 269 - 141,210.00
February 33 13,437 - 169,822,500.00
March 34 4,038 - 88,028,500.00
April 2 51,248 - 9,949,500.00
May 66 18,807 - 68,805,701.00
June 7 205,670 - 12,003,650.00
July 9 13,833 - 8,838,000.00
August 16 4,700 - 14,700,000.00
September 17 1,108 - 6,500,000.00
October 14 1,542 - 320,000.00
November 7 700 - 21,600,303.00
December 4 - - 36,490,473.40
TOTAL 242 315,352 - 464,199,873.40
IPRD-NBI Enforcement Performance
NO. OF QUANTITY ESTIMATED
MONTH Boxes/ VALUE
January 26 25,734 - 12,220,000.00
February 45 48,267 - 85,249,000.00
March 36 61,952 - 19,048,000.00
April 13 3,890 - 14,163,000.00
May 20 11,961 - 21,900,000.00
June 20 29,012 - 27,818,000.00
July 15 4,784 - 7,000,000.00
August 10 2,934 - 2,400,000.00
September 18 14,618 - 33,500,000.00
October 22 1,597 17,707 14,720,000.00
November 19 8,517 - 10,350,000.00
December 66 116,019 - 12,560,000.00
TOTAL 244 329,283 17,707 260,928,950.00
OMB Enforcement Performance
ESTIMATED SEIZED OPTICAL
NO. OF OPERATIONS DISCS ESTIMATED
Search Plant Search
Inspection Inspection Total (Php)
Warrant Audit Warrant
January 78 - 3 172,276 - 172,276 31,137,800.00
February 188 - 1 914,905 - 914,905 82,951,000.00
March 283 - 4 398,127 - 398,127 79,960,360.00
April 112 - 2 653,600 - 653,600 82,110,250.00
May 193 - 2 345,350 - 345,350 82,749,500.00
June 224 - 1 374,000 - 374,000 97,273,250.00
July 308 - 1 490,200 - 490,200 178,633,500.00
August 369 - - 403,637 - 403,637 141,839,950.00
September 204 - - 414,000 - 414,000 118,482,000.00
October 265 - 1 303,717 - 303,717 107,361,700.00
November 152 - 5 123,200 - 123,000 43,704,000.00
December 127 - - 213,600 - 213,600 74,553,000.00
TOTAL 2,503 - 23 4,806,612 - 4,806,612 1,120,489,200.00
IPU-BOC Enforcement Performance
NO. OF OPERATIONS QUANTITY ESTIMATED
MONTH Warrant of Seizure and VALUE
January 4 22,226 - 27,630,903.20
February 3 61,781 - 388,536,800.00
March 3 589,368 - 36,073,040.00
April 1 1,202 - 929,556.00
May - - - -
June 2 16,694 - 5,710,000.00
July 8 148,105 - 71,940,941.00
August 4 655,252 - 290,295,200.00
September 1 128,432 - 8,787,180.00
October 3 4,192 - 12,754,200.00
November 3 214,885 - 235,283,900.00
December 1 7,878 - 68,870,700.00
TOTAL 33 - 1,152,735,630.20
The cases covered by CAM and JDR are:
a) All civil cases (which include Copyright/Trademark disputes, among others),
except those which by law may not be compromised, settlement of estates, and
cases covered by the role on Summary Procedure;
b) Cases cognizable under the Katarungang Pambarangay Law;
c) Civil aspect of B.P. 22;
d) Civil aspect of quasi-offenses under Title 14 of the Revised Penal Code;
e) Civil aspect of Estafa, Libel where damages are sought; and
f) Civil aspect of Theft (Article 308, Revised Penal Code)
CAM is an enhanced pre-trial procedure that involves settling mediatable cases filed
in court with the assistance of a trained mediator who has been accredited by the
Philippine Supreme Court. The mediator assists party litigants to identify the issues and
develop proposals to resolve their disputes.
JDR is another innovation in the Philippine court system. When court annexed
mediation fails, the case is brought to the judge who then acts as a conciliator, a neutral
evaluator and a mediator. The judge will try to mediate the case. If the judge’s
intervention as a mediator succeeds, the case is concluded with a judgment based on a
CAM and JDR provide alternative venues in settling disputes and are being
encouraged by the Supreme Court. By enabling parties to resolve their disputes amicably,
they provide solutions that are less time-consuming, less tedious, less confrontational,
faster and less expensive options, which provide for a fair resolution of cases. By jointly
resolving the dispute, both parties come up as winners.
TASK FORCE ON ANTI-INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY PIRACY
January – December 2007
No. of Pending Cases as of December 31, 2006 823
No. of Cases Received (2007)
Total No. of Cases for Disposition 349
Dismissed under Preliminary Investigation 96
Filed in Court 470
Motion for Reconsideration Denied 8
Pending Cases as of December 31, 2007 598
Data on Convictions (2001 – 2008)
PRESIDING CASE NO. TITLE 2008 DECISION
Hon. Marlene CA-G.R. CR pp vs. Eugene 30 January 2008
Gonzales-Sison, No. 29400 Li39 (Copyright and
Court of Appeals, Trademark
13th Division infringement and
PRESIDING CASE NO. TITLE 2007 DECISION
Hon. Judge Antonio 28277-C pp vs. Abdul 09 January 2007
Jayobo, MTCC Alonto et al.40 (RA 9239: Optical
Silay, Negros Media Act of 2003)
Reported by BNU
Reported by the Optical Media Board (OMB)
PRESIDING CASE NO. TITLE 2006 DECISION
Hon. Ma. Angelica 02-531, pp vs. Nick Q. Accused Nick Q.
T. Paras-Quiambao, 02-532, Navarro, Janeth B. Navarro & Janeth B.
RTC, Branch 59, 02-533 and Navarro & Jayson Navarro – Convicted on
Angeles City 02-534 C. Canlas41 24 January 2006;
accused Jayson C.
Canlas – Dismissed on
24 January 2006
(RA 8203: Counterfeit
Hon. Ma. Angelica 00-046 pp vs. Edmundo 25 January 2006
T. Paras-Quiambao, Mangaya and (Unfair competition)
RTC, Branch 59, Perla Mangaya42
Hon. Alfredo C. 123511, pp vs. Sally King, 10 April 2006
Flores, 123512, Loreto Lee, Susan (Trademark
RTC, Branch 167,123513, Chua , Johnny infringement and
Pasig City 123514, Nubla & Emilia Unfair competition)
123515 and Nubla43
Hon. Antonio M. 00-187015 pp vs. Manny 05 June 2006
Eugenio, Jr. Marasigan (Copyright
RTC, Branch 24, infringement)
Hon. Antonio M. 98-169591 pp. vs Nestor C. 13 July 2006
Eugenio, Jr. 99-171135 Yao (Copyright
RTC, Branch 24, pp. vs. Nestor C. infringement)
Manila Yao alias “Jao Jee
Hon. Antonio M. 03-210765 pp vs. Nestor M. 24 August 2006
Eugenio, Jr. 03-210971 Batilo45 (Trademark
RTC, Branch 24, infringement)
Hon. Rufino S. 119, 756-G- pp vs. Macacuna 13 November 2006
Ferraris, Jr. 04 Gandarosa Y (RA 9239: Optical
MTCC, Branch 7, 119, 757-G- Basheron & Media Act of 2003)
Davao City 04 Alinor Pangcatan
Hon. Judge Antonio 28267-C pp vs. Asmawe 20 December 2006
Jayobo, MTCC Tantowa, Abdulah (RA 9239: Optical
Silay, Negros Mama, Maraque Media Act of 2003)
Occidental Orot, Pandaw
Reported by RTC - Branch 59, Angeles City
Reported by RTC - Branch 59, Angeles City
PRESIDING CASE NO. TITLE 2005 DECISION
Hon. Ma. Angelica 00-1159, pp vs. Benjamin 23 June 2005
T. Paras-Quiambao,00-1160, de Castro @ (Trademark
RTC, Branch 59, 01-595, Tisoy48 infringement and
Angeles City 01-093 and Unfair competition)
Hon. Sixto C. 03-2400 & pp vs. Fu Lin 08 August 2005
Marella, Jr., 03-2401 Gutierrez and (Trademark
RTC, Branch 138, Simon Chan49 infringement)
Hon. Jaime V. 54,469-04 pp vs. Manuel 29 November 2005
Quitain, and Lim Yap and (Unfair competition)
RTC, Branch 10, 54,680-04 Crestita Tan Yap50
Hon. Jaime V. 55,922-05 to pp vs. Manuel 29 November 2005
Quitain, 55,926-05 Lim Yap and (Unfair competition)
RTC, Branch 10, and 56,477- Crestita Tan Yap51
Davao City 05 to 56,481-
CASE NO. TITLE 2004 DECISION
Hon. Edwin D. MC-00-3006 pp vs. Catherine 22 June 2004
Sorongon, to MC-00- Marquez52 (Copyright
RTC, Branch 214, 3015 infringement)
Hon. Novelita 99-7554 pp vs. Romulo 27 November 2004
Villegas-Llaguno, Salvador (Trademark
RTC, Branch 22, infringement)
Reported by Bengzon Negre Untalan Intellectual Property Attorneys (BNU)
Source: RTC – Branch 24, Manila
Reported by BNU
Reported by the Optical Media Board (OMB)
Reported by the OMB
Reported by RTC - Branch 59, Angeles City
Reported by BNU
Reported by RTC-Branch 10, Davao City
Reported by RTC-Branch 10, Davao City
Reported by AFCCD/C IDG-PNP
CASE NO. TITLE 2003 DECISION
Hon. Augusto V. 45,725-2000 pp vs. Marietta 30 January 2003
Breva, Jeanne R. Fanlo (Trademark
RTC, Branch 10, and Ed R. Fanlo infringement)
Davao City 45,723-2000
and 45,724- 10 February 2003
Hon. Augusto V. 44,666-2000 pp vs. Mae Joy 21 April 2003
Breva, Barameda (Trademark
RTC, Branch 10, infringement)
CASE NO. TITLE 2002 DECISION
Hon. Augusto V. 45,726-2000, pp vs. Marietta 17 September 2002
Breva, 45,723-2000, Jeanne R. Fanlo (Trademark
RTC, Branch 10, 45-724-2000 and Ed R. Fanlo infringement)
Hon. Antonio M. 99-172794 pp. vs. Harold 03 October 2002
Eugenio, RTC, Chua53 (Copyright
Branch 24, Manila Infringement)
CASE NO. TITLE 2001 DECISION
Hon. Alfredo C. 117584 and pp vs. Elmer 10 December 2001
Flores, 117585 Mosqueda (Trademark
RTC, Branch 167, infringement)
2008: (3) 2007: (1) 2006: (19) 2005: (20) 2004: (11) 2003: (4) 2002: (4) 2001: (2)
Total: 64 convictions
Reported by Quisumbing Torres Law Office