Trade secretary Ramon Lopez stressed that investing on protecting the brand would pave the way to gaining advantage in the “innovation race” at the onset of the fourth industrial revolution.
PPD/Toto Lozano, File
DTI urges businesses anew to invest on brand building
Ehda M. Dagooc (The Freeman) - October 14, 2019 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) is urging Filipino companies to seriously invest on building their brands as failing to do so might cost them billions of losses in the future.

Trade secretary Ramon Lopez noted that one of the strategies to stay ahead is to protect their intellectual property (IP) rights.

Investing on protecting the brand would pave the way to gaining advantage in the “innovation race” at the onset of the fourth industrial revolution.

According to Lopez, micro, small and medium entrepreneurs (MSMEs) must need to understand the source of the value and brand of their respective businesses.

As the government promotes the importance of IP in business, Lopez vowed to lead in ensuring that the institutions that guard IPs are in place and functioning properly.

The secretary said DTI wants to remove constraints that would lessen investments and would discourage research and development (R&D) and innovation, like placing price controls on pharmaceutical products.

He added that DTI is a firm defender of consumer rights, “but we must also balance the interests and welfare of all stakeholders."

In 2018, applications for patent grew 28 percent year-on-year to 3,962; utility models surged 54 percent to 2,131; industrial design rose 9 percent to 1,522; and trademarks climbed 18 percent to 35,666, he said.

Lopez, who is tagged as the champion of MSMEs, particularly prior to his post in the government, pointed out an effective and balanced IP system is critical to encourage and incentivize the development of innovations, as well as to attract foreign direct investments (FDIs).

Intellectual property (IP) is a category of property that includes intangible creations of the human intellect, and primarily encompasses copyrights, patents, and trademarks. It also includes other types of rights, such as trade secrets, publicity rights, moral rights, and rights against unfair competition. (FREEMAN)

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