Januar Jahja & Partners

Indonesia: New Directors of Trademarks, Investigations at IP Office Appointed

By: Fabiola Rossy & Andrew F. Diamond, Januar Jahja and Partners

The Indonesian Directorate General of Intellectual Property (DGIP) has recently announced changes in personnel for two key director-level positions. In May 2020, Mr. Nofli was named Director of Trademarks and Geographical Indications, and Brigadier General Edison Sitorus was appointed as the Director of Investigation and Dispute Settlement (PPNS).

Previously, Director Nofli was Head of the Ministry of Law and Human Rights’ Lampung Regional Office. He took over the position of Trademark Director from his predecessor Mr. Mohamad Aliamsyah, who held the position for approximately three months before being appointed as the Secretary of the Directorate General of the General Legal Administration (DITJEN AHU), also within the Ministry of Law of Human Rights. The Trademark Director position originally became vacant following the retirement of long-standing Director Fathlurachman in December 2019.

Indonesia is the largest trademark jurisdiction (by volume) in Southeast Asia and recevies on average around 70,000 applications annually. The application process as well as almost all trademark tasks have transitioned to being entirely online, while Indonesia has also been accepting International Registration designations via the Madrid Protocol since 02 January 2018. While the administration of trademark applications has markedly improved in recent years, the availability of counterfeit goods—both online and offline—remains a pressing problem.

It is the Investigative Unit of the IP Office (PPNS) that is responsible for conducting investigations of reported IP crimes, such as infringement and/or counterfeiting cases, and has the authority to conduct raids and seize goods in certain circumstances. In his capacity as the new head of PPNS, Director Sitorus announced that the target for 2020 is the mapping of intellectual property infringement activities and improved coordination among law enforcement agencies.

The Director General of the Indonesian IP Office remains Dr. Freddy Harris, who has been in the position since November 2017. There are seven director-level positions below Director General Harris: (1) Secretary of the Secretariat; (2) Director of Copyright and Industrial Design; (3) Director of Patents, Layout Design of Integrated Circuits and Trade Secrets; (4) Director of Trademarks and Geographical Indications; (5) Director of Cooperation and Empowerment of Intellectual Property; (6) Director of Information Technology; and (7) Director of Investigation and Dispute Settlement.