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Number of intellectual property filings increase by 13% in Q1 2019

MANILA, Philippines — Applications for intellectual property increased by 13 percent in the first three months of the year, reflecting steadily the growing innovation culture in the country, the Intellectual Property Office of the Philippines (IPOPHL) said.  

IPOPHL said in a statement on Wednesday that applications for patents and trademarks reached 11,327 in the first quarter, higher than the 10,031 applications received in the same period a year ago. 

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“This growth is the product of our expansion of satellite offices last year, launching 3 in 2018. Our Bureau of Trademarks likewise implemented a trademark incentive program which we believe aided the increase,” IPOPHL said. 

IPOPHL opened satellite offices in Zamboanga, Dumaguete, and Naga last year, bringing the total to 14.

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“In broader terms, our continued information awareness and capacity-building programs (especially for research and development institutions and universities) for IP holders stoked this demand,” it said. 

IPOPHL said the latest figure points to a rise in innovative capacity — through the demand for protection of new technology and innovations — as well as increasing business activity in terms of the demand in the protection of trademarks in businesses. 

Trademarks, for example, jumped from 8,405 to 9,312, an increase of 11 percent.

IPOPHL clarified that an increase in business activity does not necessarily reflect growth of new businesses. However, it signals expansion of business as trademarks are often acquired when enterprises reach a certain size in capitalization.

Utility models or “minor innovations” are on the upswing as well, with filings surging from 332 to 674 in  first quarter. 

Majority, or 80 to 90 percent of utility model filings, came from local applicants, IPOPHL said, specifically universities and research and development institutions.  This, in turn, is indicative of the continued innovation of Philippine academic and research bodies.

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