National Intellectual Property Policy 2018 launched

The minister for economic affairs, Lekey Dorji launched the National Intellectual Property Policy (NIPP) 2018 on Thursday.

The NIPP will promote creativity and innovation for social, cultural and economic development in the country through appropriate legislation.

During the launch, Lyonpo Lekey Dorji said that the policy has been formulated to provide clarity to the development of the intellectual poverty system as it cuts across all sectors in the economy and will address the need to set up linkages between the industries, research and development, universities and the private sector and to provide a framework for improving the intellectual poverty system as a catayst for innovation and development.

Lyonpo said that the concern of indigenous people, local communities and many states over the unauthorized or inappropriate use of traditional knowledge and traditional cultural expressions remains a challenge.

“I hope the adoption of this policy will provide that synergy and clarity among various sectors and stakeholders to use the system to harness innovation for the greater growth and progress of our social, educational, economic and cultural wellbeing,” said Lyonpo.

The Director General of Department of Intellectual Property, Kinley Tenzin Wangchuk said that the policy has seven strategic objectives that will be implemented through formulation of strategies and annual action plans in close consultation with the relevant stakeholders involved.

The NIPP strategic comprises of developing balanced and development-oriented IP laws and regulations, establishing an effective institutional framework, increased strategic use of IP assets and greater use of IP system for the protection of traditional knowledge, genetic resources and traditional cultural expression, facilitatation of transfer of technology, improved access to the results of innovation and creativity, strategic participation in the international IP system and incentives to encourage innovation and creativity.

A press release from the Department of Intellectual Property states that with the increase in the number of industries in the last few decades and the growth in products and services in the market, innovation and creativity has played an important role in the expansion and growth of industries and businesses.

“To empower the industry in harnessing long-term benefits from their innovation, there is an urgency to provide greater protection and promotion of their intellectual property rights,” it states.

Works on the formulation of the intellectual property policy were initiated in 2015 to assess the impact and benefit of intellectual property rights protection in the country.

The government approved the NIPP 2018 during the 151st session of the Lhengye Zhungtshog held on February 13, 2018.

Dechen Dolkar from Thimphu