Intellectual Property. Shall we share?

To fully grasp the meaning of Intellectual property (IP) rights, we should not only consider it as some artistic and literary creation, a fabrication of the mind or an intangible asset. We should look at it as money, because an Intellectual property right is a business asset. An enterprise’s assets may be broadly divided into two categories: physical assets – including buildings, machinery, financial assets and infrastructure – and intangible assets – ranging from human capital and know-how to ideas, brands, designs and other intangible fruits of a company’s creative and innovative capacity. Traditionally, physical assets have been responsible for the bulk of the value of a company, and were considered to be largely responsible for determining the competitiveness of an enterprise in the market place. In recent years, the situation has changed significantly. Increasingly, and largely as a result of the information technologies revolution and the growth of the service economy, companies are realizing that intangible assets are often becoming more valuable than their physical assets.[1]

Large warehouses and factories are increasingly being replaced by powerful software and innovative ideas as the main source of income for a large and growing proportion of enterprises worldwide. And even in sectors where traditional production techniques remain dominant, continuous innovation and endless creativity are becoming the keys to greater competitiveness in fiercely competitive markets, be it domestic or international.

Commerce has put special emphasis on assisting small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs) in protecting their intellectual property both in the here and abroad.  We should have entities in conjunction with other agencies, to undertake activities to assist SMEs.  Intangible assets are therefore taking center stage and SMEs should seek how to make best use of their intangible assets. This is because SME’s are job engines. Today, a big chunk of net new jobs in the private sector are created by SMEs. Thus, there should be a development of concrete actions to promote a better economic environment for the hundreds of thousands SMEs and support their efforts for creating new jobs.[2]

Protecting IP rights should be given high consideration. Innovation and creativity are vital to this nation’s prosperity and job growth.  Our inventors and artists need suitable, adaptable and sufficient protection of their creations on a worldwide basis so they can enjoy the fruits of their labors and so their creations can fuel the enterprises that generate good-paying jobs and continue to enhance productivity.  In the global economy, innovation and creativity are clear competitive advantages. We must learn to safeguard these national assets.

There is no more important time to focus on these issues.  One of the keys for our economic growth is driven by innovation and creativity.  Looking out over the long term, inventors need global protection for their creations if we are to address some of the grand challenges society faces.  We have long known that research into and development of new medicines is a costly, high-risk undertaking.[3]

If we are to have any hope of providing ever-improving levels of service while containing costs, it will be with new innovations.  Overcoming economic and welfare challenges will be impossible without widespread dissemination of new technology and the people of posterity – children and students will have to be educated in the ways of innovation and creation if they and their children are to enjoy prosperity.  Protecting present-day innovation and creation is essential to assuring our economic success in the global marketplace.[4]

There is a continuation and acceleration of a trend on tightening and passing of laws that began years ago, due primarily to copyright infringement using the Internet. We should expect to see this trend continue, with that we should continue to work with I.P rights owner/holder to make them aware of the seriousness of intellectual property issues.

There should be an establishment of an entity to develop policies and procedures to not only protect their own intellectual property, but to avoid infringing on others’ intellectual property rights. As well as provide intellectual property owners with knowledge and legal tools to fight piracy and counterfeiting both at home and abroad, and assist them in their enforcement efforts overseas. There should also be assistance coming from foreign countries with technical and specialized support on effective enforcement of intellectual property rights.

The end goal is the objective to help the I.P rights owner/holder focus on due diligence processes to ensure they are not violating others’ intellectual property rights and well as Informing and educating the I.P rights owner/holder to make them even more vigilant when it comes to protecting their intellectual property and avoiding infringement of others’ intellectual property. And in case any of the legislation is passed into law in the areas of Intellectual property or there is any change in the international setting, the entity should keep abreast of the changes those involved in I.P or has interest and make sure we are advising them appropriately.

The Philippines remains on the Watch List in 2013.[5] The Philippines continues to make gradual progress on efforts to improve its legislative, administrative, and enforcement infrastructure for IPR. The Philippines has made incremental improvements on enforcement, and its IP offices continued to pursue promising modernization efforts. The United States and other organizations encourage the continuation of efforts to reduce patent application backlogs and streamline patent opposition proceedings. Piracy and counterfeiting, including the counterfeiting of medicines, goods and other materials remains widespread, and the enforcement remains ineffective at addressing this problem. Amendments and sheer effective implementation are needed to bring Philippines’ copyright law in line with international standards, including by implementing the provisions of the WIPO Internet Treaties. The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) has asked the US to remove the Philippines from Washington’s list of piracy hotspots, citing Manila’s inroads in protecting intellectual property rights (IPR) over the past two years.[6]

The United States claims that the Philippines is not engaged in “good faith negotiations” or making significant progress in negotiations to address the problems.[7]

The US looks forward to the Philippines to take important steps to address piracy over the Internet, in particular with respect to notorious online markets. The USTR said it remains concerned about the need to strengthen criminal enforcement of IPR and to improve predictability with respect to search and seizure orders. The US also remains concerned about amendments to the Patent Law that limit the patentability of certain chemical forms unless the applicant demonstrates increased efficacy. Washington, however, lauded the Philippines for passing long-awaited legislation to implement the World Intellectual Property Organization Internet Treaties.[8]

To make IP work for countries and business organizations, the governments of respective countries must take strong positive action and impose stringent punishment on the infringers

Some of the measures that could be taken to protect IP would include the provision of a transparent and enforceable IP rights ownership, irrespective of nationality. The accessibility of national and global IP systems has to be enhanced by ensuring that the costs of applying, maintaining and enforcing IP rights are minimal; by simplifying the procedures; and by harmonizing the IP systems globally and reducing the costs of obtaining IP rights in multi-countries. The government has to patronize and implement effective IP policies with proper financial management and infrastructure of IP institutions. It has to take up the task of educating local communities, business enterprises, and general public on the potential benefits of an efficient IP system. The government should offer assistance to innovators, producers, creators on the use, protection and commercialization of IP. It has to take rigorous steps against counterfeiting and piracy and strengthen the legal framework to ensure effective implementation and enforcement against IP theft.[9]

The Philippine Intellectual property authorities have taken great strides towards the increased protection and enforcement of IP rights. The protection of Intellectual Properties is a very critical element. The government should give incentives like tax rebates, besides taking steps to protect copyright laws, in order to boost the country’s industry. The Philippines with regard to Intellectual property has come a long way from its inception, IP rights in the Philippines has never looked more positive. With the government showing enthusiasm for and commitment to the protection of IP rights, IP owners have become more proactive in enforcing their rights by all means, and are exploring unchartered waters to obtain unique remedies from the courts.

Although the benefits of specialized IP courts are would definitely be of big lift in the enforcement of IP rights, much still remains to be done regarding the criminal justice system, the Philippine system for the protection of IP rights is improving, as seen in the numerous number of jurisprudence tailoring to the cases, and the actions undertaken by the government.

[1] WIPO – intellectual property for business

[2] ROBERT L. STOLL, Protecting Intellectual Property Rights in a Global Economy: Current Trends and Future Challenges, December 9, 2009

[3] Supra

[4] Supra

[5] USTR Watch List 2013

[6] Ben Arnold O. De Vera, DTI presses Philippines’ removal from US piracy watch list, August 23, 2013.

[7] U.S Trade Representatives IPP Watchlist

[8] Jennifer A. Ng. In Philippine retention on US piracy watch list baffles government. Retrieved Oct 18 2013 , from

[9] P. Mohan Chandran. White Paper – Intellectual Property.



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One response to “Intellectual Property. Shall we share?

  1. Pingback: Students’ Take: Contacts viz RA 10173 | Berne Guerrero

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