Intellectual Property (IP) has become an important topic to consider for entrepreneurs around the world, as it is a way to protect the intellectual property they have created or have been developing in the sector they have decided to establish, which has turned into a very important value for their company in addition to being a differential factor in the market.
It is not only important to get advice on how to form a company correctly or to get your RUC number, but it is also essential that you learn about registering and protecting your intellectual property, especially in a competitive market like Peru. It can be a key element if you are also thinking about expanding your business and making it successful; what is more, it is important to mention that as with any other property, the owner can develop it, assign it, sell it or grant rights to it in exchange for royalties.
What is an Intellectual Property?
According to WIPO (World Intellectual Property Organization), IP refers to creations of the mind – everything from works of art to inventions, computer programs to trademarks, and other commercial signs. It is believed that creativity and invention are vital for economic growth and therefore must be protected and have rights, as well as allowing the author to have recognition and profit.
WIPO is a global forum that focuses on issues related to services, policies, cooperation, and information on intellectual property. It is considered a United Nations agency with 193 members. Its mission is to achieve a well-balanced and effective international intellectual property system for the benefit of everyone.
Intellectual Property in Latin America
WIPO has a regional office for Latin America and the Caribbean, which provides technical assistance and skills building to the 33 member countries. This office facilitates the use of intellectual property to achieve social, cultural, and economic development.
This office provides programs on IP rights in relation to patents, trademarks, industrial designs, geographical indications, and copyright, through technical workshops, adapted to current demand.
Among other activities that they perform, we can mention:
Develop national IP strategies, taking into account the needs of each country.
Manage the trust funds of the member countries to contribute to good use of the IP and its good development.
Supports horizontal cooperation initiatives among member countries, taking advantage of existing local capacities and resources.
According to WIPO statistics, only 56,000 patent applications were received in Latin America and the Caribbean last year, which is 1.7% of all applications worldwide. From the 3 326 300 applications filed during 2018 – an increase of 5.2% over 2017 – 2 221 800 were filed in Asia (66.8%); 633 300 in North America (19%); 362 000 in Europe (10.9%), 36 200 in Oceania (1.1%) and 17 000 in Africa (0.5%).
Alejandra Luzardo, the leader in Innovation and Creativity of the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB), says that some of the most important problems faced by entrepreneurs are the lack of legal knowledge, the lack of knowledge about the advantages of registering their creations, and the lack of trust in intellectual property systems.
Intellectual Property in Peru
In Peru, intellectual property rights are protected by INDECOPI – National Institute for the Defense of Competition and Protection of Intellectual Property, created by Decree-Law No. 25868 in November 1992, to protect all forms of intellectual property in addition to other functions.
As we know, the intellectual property covers all creations and inventions of people; we can mention two types of IP rights:
Copyright: Protects all creations of ingenuity such as literary works, artistic and scientific works, songs, poems, and electronic devices, among others; and protects the rights of the author over his/her works.
Industrial Property: Here we identify new creations such as patents of invention, and industrial designs, among others; and distinctive signs such as trademarks, commercial names, trade slogans, and more. The creativity, invention, and ingenuity of any person or company to differentiate themselves from the market are protected here.
It is worth mentioning that INDECOPI leads the National Policy on Intellectual Property of Peru – PNPI, which sets as a central purpose that intellectual property is a necessary element for increasing productivity, competitiveness, and innovation, encouraging that knowledge and creativity become drivers of economic and social growth in the country.
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