By Bernie Cahiles-Magkilat
The Intellectual Property Office of the Philippines (IPOPHL) expects to further improve in the next Global Innovation Index (GII) survey on growing awareness among Filipinos about innovation and the need for their protection from potential intellectual property infringement.
IPOPHL Director-General Josephine R. Santiago said this following the country’s significant improvement in the GII 2019 Report to 54th from 73rd in the previous report, making the country the most improved among its peers in the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN).
The 2019 GII report showed that the country is now placed within the top 42 percent innovative economies, pulling it closer to the frontier as compared to the past four years when it has annually been within the 60 percent top countries.
The Philippines also entered for the first time into the group of innovation achievers — economies that outperformed on innovation relative to GDP — for 2019 as it booked above-average scores in all innovation dimensions, with the exception of market sophistication, relative to its lower-middle-income peers.
“A better performance in the next GII is seen also due to the consistent growth in TM filings and a surge in the deposition of creative works and UM applications in 2018,” the IPOPHL DG said.
In 2018, record of copyrighted works grew 29 percent year-on-year. That same year, TM applications and UM filings rose by 16 percent and 56 percent, respectively, from 2017 levels. UMs were the biggest driver to the overall 2018 IP filings, which grew 15 percent annually.
“Likewise, the agency expects improved scores in patent filings by origin and industrial design (ID) filings on the back of growing demand for the protection of their IP rights, as well as the office’s proactive approach in reaching out to stakeholders through the Intellectual Property Satellite Offices (IPSO)which are now spread in 14 provinces,” she added.
Santiago revealed that the IPOPHL will expand the IPSO-network this year by setting up two more in provinces where economic activity is thriving. Santiago also said the IPOPHL will be extending the Juana program, which waives application fees, to patent inventions, UM, and industrial design (ID).
Last year, patent filings by Philippine residents reached an all-time high of 469. This marked a 65 percent annual increase and the first time it breached the 300-mark. Meanwhile, ID filings by residents improved by 21 percent year-on-year.
The turnaround time for filings to registration or grant has also been seeing a drastic reduction across nearly all IP asset types in recent years. The cut-down of processing time for such transactions, and other related ones, is seen to improve further amid the passage of the Ease of Doing Business Act of 2018. This, in turn, will further entice businesses to apply for IP protection.
“The country’s remarkable improvement in its GII standing proves the effectivity and efficiency of the IPOPHL’s strategy in enabling the academe and the private sector. We have more in the pipeline so the world can expect to see the Philippines climb further to the top,” Santiago added.
“The IPOPHL expects to improve further in these areas we have advanced in the next GII round. This outlook is made on the basis of new platforms and increased conduct of events that help bridge academe to industry,” DG Santiago said, referring specifically to the Mind2Market program.
The Mind2Market program, which aims to assist innovators throughout their IP journey, from creation, development to commercialization, is now gaining ground with the inclusion of three government partners. These are namely the Board of Investments, the Department of Trade and Industry’s Bureau of Small and Medium Enterprise Development, and the Philippine Rice Research Institute.
The Intellectual Property Office of the Philippines (IPOPHL) has expressed delight with the results of the latest Global Innovation Index (GII) report, viewing the Philippines’ huge improvement in both ranking and score as the concretizing of the country’s efforts to put innovation at the center of its economic, socio-cultural, and scientific development.
“We welcome the positive results, especially the ranking improvements of indicators that were influenced by the intellectual property (IP) system. These are mostly under the pillars of Knowledge Creation, Knowledge Diffusion, Intangible Assets, and Creative Goods and Services,” IPOPHL Director-General Josephine R. Santiago said.
“One of our national priority agenda is innovation. But It is not often understood how IP adds value and enhances innovation, and how this can be used as a competitive strategic tool by innovators and creators,” Santiago added.