Singapore: RCEP 2022 - IP implication on Singapore businesses

In brief

The Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) Agreement entered into force on 1 January 2022, following the ratification of the Agreement by 10 parties — Australia, Brunei, Cambodia, China, Japan, Laos, New Zealand, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam.

The RCEP Agreement includes new areas, such as intellectual property, competition policy, e-commerce, government procurement and SMEs. In this update, we highlight the key IP benefits of the RCEP Agreement that are likely to have an impact on Singapore businesses in 2022.


Key takeaways

  • Seamless navigation of IP regimes

Under the RCEP Agreement, IP rules across the signatory countries will be standardised. RCEP country members have acceded to key multilateral agreements on IP protection, enforcement and international cooperation. With strong and reliable IP protection among Singapore's key trading partners and neighbouring ASEAN countries, Singapore businesses can stay competitive by expanding and setting up their operations in RCEP countries — with the assurance that their IP rights will be protected.

  • Protection of digital IP rights

There is also an increased effort under the RCEP Agreement to protect digital assets, such as domain names, copyrighted works and software, by penalising the removal of digital Rights Management Information. Protection of such assets is a key step in fighting digital piracy and is vital to Singapore businesses as transactions increasingly move online.

  • Enforceability of IP rights

Signatory countries under the RCEP Agreement must commit to making enforcement actions available to IP right holders. Signatory countries must establish legislative framework for civil and criminal litigation where IP rights are infringed.



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