I would like to welcome you with great enthusiasm to the first edition of the AIPPI Newsletter in 2023! We are delighted to have such an outstanding IP community.

At the beginning of 2023, the AIPPI Bureau enhanced its purpose to better serve its members and the global IP communities. The Bureau and General Secretariat are currently busy preparing for the AIPPI Spring Meeting to be held in Venice on 30 March 2023, one day before the IT-FR-ES Trilateral Meeting. Those who have been organising the Trilateral Meeting graciously agreed to have our Spring Meeting back-to-back. The Spring Meeting is a new format for AIPPI, as meeting once a year at the AIPPI World Congress may not be enough in the fast-changing global environment. By providing meeting opportunities between the World Congresses, we believe that more young members located near venue locations may be involved in AIPPI activities.

Our young members will again have the opportunity to connect this year at the Young AIPPI Members Summit. We are continuing our “Scan the Globe” webinar series to share an update on IP systems worldwide with our members. In parallel, other interesting online events organised by our Standing Committees and National and Regional Groups will take place. We are also pleased to see that our community is increasingly interacting with our association and making its network aware of AIPPI’s activities and its global impact on intellectual property harmonisation.

As the pandemic fears receded, AIPPI also started rebuilding relationships with other IP organisations, both governmental and non-governmental. A delegation of the Bureau visited EPO in Munich and WIPO in Geneva in November last year and we attended many meetings of our sister organisations. As a result, AIPPI receives observer status for the Traditional Knowledge and Design Treaty processes WIPO is working on. We now have a much clearer landscape of what is happening around us, which became gloomy during the last three years, and one focus area of 2023 will be to strengthen the collaboration with governmental and non-governmental organisations.

For example, substantive patent law harmonisation (SPLH) initiatives are gathering momentum. After visiting EPO last year in Munich, which currently leads SPLH discussions, we started talking to our sister organisations such as AIPLA and FICPI. They are now coming along, and new developments are expected. As a leading international IP association, AIPPI will continue to position itself at the centre of harmonisation efforts and inform our members in more detail about what is happening in IP around the world.

To conclude my opening message, I wish you all a happy and prosperous new year and look forward to seeing you in either Venice or Istanbul, or both!