A Handbook of Contemporary Research
Research Handbooks in Intellectual Property series
Edited by Paul Torremans
Chapter 16: Development of law in Asia: divergence versus convergence.
Copyright piracy and the prosecution of copyright offences and the adjudication of IP cases: is there a need for a special IP court in Malaysia? Ida Madieha bt. Abdul Ghani Azmi1 Introduction The TRIPS Agreement has brought about the harmonization of substantive intellectual property laws in WTO member countries, Asia included. Malaysia,2 being a developing country, amended all its intellectual property (IP) laws and introduced new rights to comply with the Agreement in late 1999. To that extent, the degree of divergence between member countries on substantive IP rights has been substantially reduced. However, in certain instances, divergence still exists. One such area is the adjudication of intellectual property cases. In some countries, such as Indonesia and Thailand, special IP courts have been established to provide standardized procedure for the hearing of IP disputes. This is despite the fact that the TRIPS Agreement explicitly does not mandate for the establishment of such special courts. In Malaysia, the increasing backlog of IP cases before the courts has pushed the Government to introduce a specialized IP court. This chapter attempts to investigate the problems of piracy in Malaysia and examines the actual problem of prosecuting IP offences in Malaysia. It explores all the legislative mechanisms available in Malaysia to assist the enforcement authorities in their effort to stamp out piracy. The important provisions of these statutes will be examined in determining their effectiveness. Understandably, a discussion of this nature would not be complete without looking at the actual number of cases....
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