The National Office for Intellectual Property (NOIP) has been authorised to grant certificates on intellectual property protection and help law enforcement agencies make final decisions in cases.
NOIP Deputy Director General Hoang Thanh Tan has requested relevant agencies and the general public not to consider NOIP as both a legislative and executive body any more. “NOIP conclusions are valuable in terms of specialist knowledge only.
Once a patent is granted, the product must be protected by the state. Market Control and the court have to implement their authorised responsibilities without consulting NOIP’s opinion any more,” he said.
Tan’s request comes from the ongoing dispute between Duy Loi and Truong Tho private establishments which produce folding hammocks. Duy Loi’s hammocks were granted patent No 7173 by NOIP, which Truong Tho has asked NOIP to remove.
The problem lies in the fact that NOIP, on one hand, has to receive the petition by Truong Tho on the patent removal, but on the other hand, has to give advice to HCM City Market Control Sub-department to help them deal with infringed products, including Truong Tho’s.
Statistics show that in the majority of cases, parties prefer lodging complaints with the control market department or the police, while only copyright cases are settled by the courts. Before making decisions in the case of intellectual property violation, both the market control department and the court always consult with NOIP.
“It is NOIP which grants certificates on intellectual property. How can we settle without NOIP’s opinion?” HCM City Market Control Sub-department Huynh Tan Phong said. Meanwhile, Le Net, a lecturer from HCM City Law University, said it is just a habit, and that there is no necessity to consult with NOIP in such cases.