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First Successful Mediation Under WIPO-Singapore ASEAN Mediation

09 Nov 2023

SINGAPORE, 9 NOV 2023 – The World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO)-Singapore ASEAN Mediation Programme (AMP) has seen its first successful mediation case. 

2          The mediation in Singapore revolved around a pair of trade marks used by three Singapore businesses related by family ties – Chew’s Optics on the one hand, and Chew’s Optics (Bishan) and Chew’s Optics (Kovan) on the other. Prior to its trade mark registrations in 2022, Chew’s Optics had been using the marks in the course of business from 1988 and licensed use of the marks to Chew’s Optics (Bishan) in 2000. The latter then created Chew’s Optics (Kovan) in 2021 and used the marks without the requisite licenses from Chew’s Optics.

3          Mediated by Viviene Sandhu, a Singapore lawyer, under the auspices of the WIPO Arbitration and Mediation Center (WIPO Center), a settlement agreement between the three optometry businesses was reached within a day. In addition to cost savings through subsidised mediation costs, the resolution translated into significant time savings for all parties as traditional litigation would have taken one to two years.

4          “We are delighted that this collaboration with the Intellectual Property Office of Singapore (IPOS) has seen its first success and that another mediation case is already underway. As more businesses expand into ASEAN, AMP will stand them in good stead as an effective mediation catalyst, not only as a cost and time saving IP dispute resolution option, but also to deliver commercially beneficial outcomes,” said Mr Ignacio de Castro, Director, WIPO Center.

5          In addition to supporting businesses, AMP helps to nurture mediation talents in Singapore, by providing for a “shadow” mediator to sit in and observe the process. 23-year-old Shannen Chua, an IPOS Young IP Mediator, penned the case summary with her first hand observations of how the mediator helped to identify the root cause of the dispute and mediated the case with tact and sensitivity to each party’s needs.

6          Designed to help businesses resolve their IP or technology disputes, AMP provides funding of up to SGD 8,000 for disputes or commercial contract negotiations involving at least one ASEAN party which are mediated at the WIPO Center. AMP is an initiative by the WIPO Singapore Office (WSO) and IPOS under the WIPO-Singapore Government Memorandum of Understanding (MOU). Interested applicants can apply for AMP funding by informing the WIPO Center when or after making a Request for WIPO Mediation. More details on this programme can be found here.



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Ms Jenny Kwok
Senior Assistant Director
Media & Communications                                             

 Ms Cherie Koh
Senior Assistant Director
Media & Communications


About IPOS

The Intellectual Property Office of Singapore (IPOS) helps businesses use IP and intangible assets to grow. We are committed to building Singapore into an international hub for intangible assets and IP to drive Singapore’s future growth. We are a government agency under the Ministry of Law.

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