Patent Strengthening Workshop

DGIPR, BPPT and BPPI meet on 20 September 2016 to discuss how to strengthen Indonesian patent performance.

Following the introduction from DGIPR, the three organisations provided an overview of the current issues and challenges that each faced in the area of patenting. The three organisations have different systems and approaches, and it was considered that an understanding of the needs and the concerns of each organisation will help patenting process.

The meeting considered a number of issues, including the new patent laws now in operation.  The meeting also heard about the need to improve the storage of patent information, and the desire to move to a digitized system.

It was also noted that patenting in Indonesia has had a flat growth rate since 2010 (Thomson Reuters ASEAN – the emerging research and innovation hub). There are many factors that contribute to this position, and the workshop sought ways within existing operations to improve the situation.

After discussion, the following five major conclusions were made:

  1. Both BPPI and BPPT, noted concerns over the time taken to assess an application and then grant the patent. In the case of BPPI this averages about 48 months. Taking such a long period of time provides a disincentive, and does little to encourage people to patent. It was agreed that there would be benefit in more sharing of information and standard operating procedures between the organisations with a view of speeding up the process, and providing positive encouragement for people to patent.  There is a critical need for DG IPR to shorten the time period taken to examine patent applications.
  2. In relation to financial incentives for organisations to patent, there was a general discussion about the merits of targeting the incentives to areas of higher priority for technology development with in Indonesia. In this way, patenting could be encouraged to areas of national importance.
  3. BPPT has been giving considerable thought to how to select areas for technology development and for patenting. More consideration needs to be given to the value of a patent, and how to value intellectual property.
  4. There was a general agreement that a more widespread understanding of the purposes of intellectual property protection was needed. As a specific example, a discussion took place around so-called vanity patents. These are patents which are filed, but with no intention to exploit the intellectual property.  The value in protection of intellectual property comes from its use or exploitation, with the patent preventing others from benefiting from the IP at the expense of the patent holder. More effort needs to be made to raise awareness of this issue.  Developing some case studies of the successful protection of IP through patents, and then exploiting them for economic benefit would be helpful in building a wider understanding of the need for patenting.

These case studies could also form a basis for assisting those organisations making patent applications to improve the quality of their application.  This is an ongoing issue in the patent process, and one in which DG IPR should become more proactive in a coaching/educating manner.