On Wednesday, March 15 at 2 p.m. EST, the IPO Chat Channel is presenting a webinar titled Antitrust in Asia: SEPs and New IP Guidelines in China, Korea, and Japan. Here is a link to the webpage, and here is a description of the webinar:
For all the scrutiny the U.S. government has given to standard essential patents (SEPs) in recent years and to the commitment to license them under fair, reasonable and non-discriminatory (FRAND) terms, the U.S. Department of Justice has also taken care to express broad approval of patent standards. But in Asia, the governments of China, Korea, and Japan recently have taken a more punishing attitude toward SEPs. All three have either issued or have drafted new guidelines that create a competition law sanction for conduct involving SEPs, based on presumptive rules rather than the effects-based approach of the U.S.
Those same guidelines also blur the distinction between SEPs and valuable patents that are not in a standard, setting the stage for compulsory licensing of the latter. And in China, a draft guideline suggests that a dominant patent holder abuses its market position if it imposes a license that limits the licensee's ability to challenge the validity of the patent. Our panelists include a founder of a Chinese law firm specializing in technology; a U.S. law-firm expert on the intersection of antitrust and IP; and the director of a global antitrust institute who formerly served at the FTC. They will discuss the guidelines and how corporations can best navigate this new environment in Asia.
Personally, I would not characterize the attitudes of competition authorities in China, Korea, and Japan so negatively (e.g., "punishing,"), but the program may be an interesting one nonetheless. Panelists will be Jay Jurata of Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe LLP; Gabriella Liu, head of the IP practice group of the Beijing-based IParagon Law Firm; and Koren Wong-Irvin , the Director of the Global Antitrust Institute at George Mason University.