Mr Rowel S. Barba

Director General, Chair of ASEAN Working Group on IP Cooperation (AWGIPC)
Intellectual Property Office of the Philippines (IPOPHL)


Mr. Barba is the Director General of the Intellectual Property of the Philippines (IPOPHL), the government agency mandated to administer and implement State policies relating to the development, promotion, and protection of intellectual property rights.

Mr. Barba obtained his Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science and Bachelor of Laws Degree (Juris Doctor equivalent) from the University of the Philippines, the country’s premier State University, where he served on the editorial board of the Philippine Law Journal.

Mr. Barba started his legal career as an Associate at the Ponce Enrile Cayetano Reyes & Manalastas Law Offices. He distinguished himself while at the JAKA Group of Companies, a local conglomerate with interests in investment management, real estate, property management and development, food production and marketing, air transportation, and forestry plantation management, among others, where he became the Group’s Vice President and Chief Legal Counsel. Mr. Barba then served as the Vice President of publicly-listed RFM Corporation where he headed the Corporate Legal & HR Divisions.

Before his appointment as Director General of IPOPHL, Atty. Barba was an Undersecretary at the Department of Trade and Industry where he concurrently served as the Chief of Staff of the Secretary. In this capacity, Mr. Barba was the Secretary’s alternate representative in Presidential cabinet meetings and was the lead official for the organization of Presidential visits within the department. In addition, Atty. Barba supervised various offices, attached agencies, and boards under the Office of the Secretary. In addition to his current role as Director General of lPOPHL, Mr. Barba sits as a Governor of the Board of Investments and is the Acting Chairman of the Cagayan Economic Zone Authority.