By United States Ambassador Perry L. Holloway
Every year on April 26, we celebrate World Intellectual Property Day to learn about the role that patents, trademarks, and copyright play in promoting innovation, creativity, and progress. As we celebrate this year under the worldwide theme “Powering Change: Women in Innovation and Creativity,” we recognize the ingenuity of women around the world, who are bravely using their ideas, designs, and products to shape a brighter future for us all.
It’s not just individuals who benefit. Research shows robust legislation to protect IPR encourages the development of the arts and breeds innovation in science and technology. Many people assume protecting people’s IPR only helps high-income countries where companies spend large amounts on research and development (R&D). However, economists have learned that improving patent, trademark, and copyright protections help economic development in countries at all economic levels. This is because a strong IPR framework aids open trade, which in turn creates greater trust between trading partners, helping increase economic prosperity. In fact, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce’s international index found a strong link between robust IPR protections and increased technology transfers and exchanges, access to foreign direct investment, and employment. Even countries without large – or even visible – R&D sectors benefit from a strong IPR regulatory framework because it gives them more access to new partnerships, technology, and knowledge.
As the Government of Guyana prepares to take up the pen on copyright legislation, I commend the Ministers, advocates, and content creators that have been and will continue to champion an improved framework of IPR protections in country. They are the visionaries that see, today, how legislation, treaties, and outreach will ultimately benefit the people and the economy. Today, on World Intellectual Property Day, I salute them and encourage all of us to support local content creators – from artists to inventors to software engineers – by purchasing their work through legal means and applauding those advocating for change.
Article taken from: https://gy.usembassy.gov/op-ed-protecting-intellectual-property-incentivizing-economic-growth-creativity-and-progress/