Charting the Course for Innovation and a Robust Global Intellectual Property Environment
Innovation has the potential to create high quality jobs and propel economic growth, but strong intellectual property protections are essential for innovation to flourish. Recently, the Global Intellectual Property Center (GIPC), a division of the US Chamber of Commerce, launched its second annual International Intellectual Property (IP) Index, Charting the Course, an overview of how 25 countries have risen to the challenge of creating a climate that protects innovation.
This Index will serve as an important tool for policy makers and the business community to evaluate a country’s IP environment on the basis of 30 factors that create an optimal climate that fosters innovation, economic growth and foreign direct investment (FDI). Factors identified include: adequate intellectual property rights (IPR) enforcement; membership in and ratification of international treaties that promote strong IPR; and availability of frameworks that promote cooperative action against online piracy.
Below are some highlights from this year’s Index.
- In June 2009, then-President of India Pratibha Patil announced to that country’s Parliament that 2010-2020 would be India’s “Decade of Innovation.” Unfortuantely, GIPC’s Index finds that India has the weakest IP environment of the 25 countries evaluated. ALEC has expressed concerns about India’s IP challenges in our model policy Resolution to Highlight Challenges and Opportunities in the US-India Trade Relationship and on our blog American Legislator.
- Malaysia has introduced significant, positive changes to its copyright laws.
- While Canada trails other developed nations on IPR protection and enforcement, if the provisions of the recently negotiated Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA) with the European Union (EU) are successfully implemented, IP prospects for our northern neighbor improve dramatically.
ALEC recognizes that IPR protection is crucial to America’s economic health. Among the seventy-five diverse industries that make heavy use of IP, wages are 30% higher than non-IP-intensive firms and account for 74% of U.S. exports, leading to an annual output of $5.8 trillion. Given these facts, it is easy to understand why ensuring that the trade frameworks we are currently negotiating have robust IP provisions is so vital – our economy depends on it.
Charting the Course is one more tool that we can use to track IPR policies around the world to safeguard one of our nation’s most important assets – American innovation and ingenuity. ALEC, a strong supporter of global IPR, congratulates GIPC on this important guide.