THE Intellectual Property Office of the Philippines (IPOPHL) plans to strengthen its assistance for micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSMEs) to reach global markets.

“IPOPHL will intensify efforts to help MSMEs recover and more homegrown names to scale up in global markets. In aligning with Trade Secretary Alfredo E. Pascual’s vision, we will equip more MSMEs with the sufficient knowledge and capacity to develop their IP (intellectual property) protection strategies,” IPOPHL Director General Rowel S. Barba said in a statement on Wednesday.

Further, Mr. Barba said that local businesses, entrepreneurs, startups, innovators, and artists should utilize IP in building competitiveness and resilience in a knowledge economy.

“The borderless digital world is also a bright spot for recovery, with opportunities for local high-value brands, innovative IP products and creative outputs to become a profound part of global supply chains,” Mr. Barba said.

Mr. Barba also said that the IPOPHL is optimistic that the country will sustain its momentum in maximizing IP for economic recovery and growth, amid the change in leadership at its parent agency, the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI).

Mr. Pascual recently assumed the role as the DTI’s top official, replacing Ramon M. Lopez.

“IPOPHL extends its full support in advancing the new secretary’s goal of enabling innovation. There is already growing recognition of our country as a champion of IP protection and enforcement, both in the region and the world. We will continue to build on this positive reputation,” Mr. Barba said.

Meanwhile, Mr. Barba said that the IPOPHL will renew its push for the amendment of Republic Act No. 8293 or the IP Code of the Philippines during the 19th Congress.

“The move will help the Philippines keep in step with legal and technological developments happening across the world while boosting its attractiveness for tech businesses. Modern IP laws and efforts could be a point of attraction for foreign startups and big tech companies to set up shop in a country,” Mr. Barba said.

“The enhancements we push for will allow for flexible protection mechanisms that will encourage greater commercialization of inventions. Protective forms of trademarks will be expanded to create more tools for competitiveness while we establish clearer provisions on copyright and aim to provide ease in doing business among artists,” he added.  — Revin Mikhael D. Ochave