The Republic of the Philippines is now a member of the Protocol Relating to the Madrid Agreement Concerning the International Registration of Marks (Madrid Protocol) with the deposit of the instrument of accession with the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) on 25 April 2012. President Noynoy Aquino signed the instrument of accession on 27 March 2012.
The Philippines is the first country to accede this year and is the 85th Contracting Party to the Protocol.
The Madrid Protocol is a filing system that facilitates the registration of marks in several countries through a single application filed with the IPOPHL. It simplifies the protection of marks outside the Philippines and reduces the cost of registration. The major trading partners of the Philippines—Japan, United States of America, People's Republic of China, Singapore, Republic of Korea, Germany—are all members of the Madrid Protocol. The Philippine accession to the Madrid Protocol is essential in making the country globally competitive. By membership in the Madrid Protocol, the Philippines opens its doors to eighty-four countries (which is expected to increase over time), the economies of which constitute most of international trade. Foreign businesses interested in establishing their businesses in the Philippines will be encouraged by the ease in protecting their marks in the country. More importantly, accession to the Madrid Protocol will help Filipino entrepreneurs to protect their brands as they expand into international markets since financial and administrative costs are considerably reduced. The Madrid Protocol eases the cost of doing business for foreign investors and facilitates exporting of businesses for Filipino entrepreneurs.
Accession by the Philippines to the Madrid Protocol was endorsed by the Philippine Chamber of Commerce and Industry (PCCI), Makati Business Club (MBC), Federation of Filipino-Chinese Chambers of Commerce and Industry, Inc. (FFCCCII), American Chamber of Commerce of the Philippines (AMCHAM)/Joint Foreign Chambers of the Philippines (JFC), the Philippine Retail Association (PRA), Association of Filipino Franchisers, Inc. (AFFI), and the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce Philippines, Inc. (FICCI).
The IPOPHL will begin accepting applications filed via the Madrid Protocol on 25 July 2012.