Singapore sets up first intellectual property office in China

 Artist's impression of Sino-Singapore Guangzhou Knowledge City.
Artist's impression of Sino-Singapore Guangzhou Knowledge City.PHOTO: ASCENDAS

SINGAPORE - Chinese innovative enterprises are up and on the rise, and Singapore is stepping in to help them with their patents.

The Intellectual Property Office of Singapore (Ipos) set up its first IP representative office at the Sino-Singapore Guangzhou Knowledge City in Guangdong, China on Tuesday. The office will help Singapore-based IP service providers to reach out to new, innovative businesses in China and vice versa.

The setting-up of this office does not come unpremediated. Earlier in May, Ipos, along with the Singapore Business Federation and IE Singapore, organised an inaugural AccessAsia@Singapore road show that showcased Singapore's value proposition as an IP hub to internationalise Chinese businesses.

These developments are in light of increasing patent applications from China. A recent report by the World Intellectual Property Office (Wipo) indicated that China had the third highest number of international patent applications filed under Wipo's Patent Cooperation Treaty System (PCT), trailing only the United States and Japan. These three countries were most notable in leading innovation in the computer technology and digital telecommunication sectors

Mr Daren Tang, Chief Executive of Ipos expressed the importance of supporting the "increasing flow of ideas, knowledge and innovation between China and South-East Asia."

"We want to help Singapore's IP service providers connect with innovative companies in China, and also promote Singapore's suite of IP products and services to Chinese companies that have set their sights on the dynamic ASEAN region."

The office was unveiled today by Singapore's Acting Minister for Education and Senior Minister of State for the Ministry of Defence Ong Ye Kung.

Mr Ong, who is also the Co-Chairman of the Singapore-Guangdong Collaboration Council, explained, "The Sino-Singapore Guangzhou Knowledge City is an important flagship project aimed at becoming a knowledge and innovation zone, and catalysing the economic transformation of Guangdong. It will add to the flow of information and knowledge to the 'One Belt One Road' vision."

He added, "As more companies from Guangdong bring their innovations to the rest of the world, IPOS' first representative office overseas will facilitate their link up with IP service providers in Singapore, to protect and manage their innovations in the South-East Asian region and beyond."

A spokesman from Guangzhou Development District (GDD) said that the office will deepen "bilateral intellectual property cooperation between the two countries". It will also contribute to the development of a joint IP demonstration zone, increase bilateral exchanges, and attract IP service providers to locate in the knowledge city.

tanfh@sph.com.sg