The KIPO-WIPO Appropriate Technology Grand Symposium was held in Seoul on April 29th and 30th. 
The symposium was conducted under the theme “Establishing an AT Value Chain for Sustainable Development,” and it was jointly held by the Korean Intellectual Property Office and the World Intellectual Property Organization, and sponsored by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. 

As one of the world’s five largest intellectual property offices and five largest trademark offices, KIPO is closely involved in global IP issues. Since 2010, KIPO has utilized its database of 270 million pieces of patent information to help develop appropriate technologies (AT) in order to improve the quality of life for people in developing countries. 

KIPO provided AT to Chad in 2010, Nepal, and Cambodia in 2011, and to Guatemala in 2012. In 2013, it developed an aromatic oil extractor for the Philippines, as well as a bicycle-operated water pump for people in Papua New Guinea. In 2014, KIPO built a sewage treatment system in Vietnam and developed special beekeeping technology for Ghana. These efforts have helped generate new jobs and increase the incomes of local residents. 

For example, KIPO’s sponsorship of mango drying technology in the Philippines led to the development of a polyphenol extracting technology that can be widely used in the manufacturing of medicines and cosmetics. The result was more than 250 new jobs and expected sales of around 20 million U.S. dollars. 

This year’s symposium featured a number of high-profile guests, including Miguel A. Margain, Director General of IMPI; Namjil Chinbat, Director General of Mongolia’s IPO; Teshale Yona Lagide, Director General of Ethiopia’s IPO; Allan B. Gepty, Deputy Director General and Officer-in-Charge of the Philippines’ IPO; Pham Phi Ang, Deputy Director General of NOIP; and Mario Matus, Deputy Director General of WIPO. These guests shared their own experiences with AT implementation and discussed the future of AT development. More than 10 well-known examples of appropriate technology, including the “Q-Drum,” were showcased at the event. 

KIPO’s Director General, Kwon Ohjung, said, “I hope this symposium will aid us in designing a blueprint for constructing AT value chains.”