Intellectual Property Rights - Part 2

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Byline: Florangel Rosario Braid

THE National Intellectual Property Strategy focuses on the use of copyright to "foster a creative and competitive Philippines that values, nurtures and uses intellectual property for national development". It derives its mandate from Sections 10 and 13, Article XIV which underscore the importance of science and technology for national development and "shall give priority to research and development, invention, innovation, and their utilization... support indigenous, appropriate, and self-reliant and technological capabilities, and their application to the country's productive systems and national life. Section 13 mandates the State to "protect and secure the exclusive rights of scientists, inventors, artists and other gifted citizens to their intellectual property and creations, particularly when beneficial to the people, for such period as may be provided by law."

We recognize and appreciate the importance of promoting the rights of our authors, performers, broadcasters, and inventors and therefore the need to have responsive laws as well as regulatory and enforcement mechanisms to protect their rights. I am pleased to note that Congress has organized a Technical Working Group which will prepare a framework that seeks to balance the rights of intellectual property holders and those of the consumers. The TWG, constituted from government and private agencies will undertake a comprehensive review of the problem and ensure that the rights of all players are taken into consideration and that it would transcend narrow interests. The present Copyright policy already emphasizes measures to encourage creativity, safeguard innovation, inspire investors' confidence and the like. Already, some guidelines for the TWG suggest concerns like making products more accessible and affordable. However, existing laws do not as yet have technological protection for the Internet and portable technologies like the cellphone.

What is urgently needed, according to our local presentors like former IP Director General Emma Francisco and Eugeniano Perez III, consultant to IP is to have a unified policy plan and a dynamic public awareness policy. …