Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Philippines local inventor paucity

After reporting the rise in recent patent applications in SE Asia here, a report from the Philippines noted the lack of local inventions. In 2010, there were just 167 patent applications from local inventors, while foreign applications stood at 3,224.

As a result the government proposes to reinstate the Philippines Inventors Commission, to promote research and development and provide technical, financial, legal, and marketing assistance to Filipino inventors. There is a Technology Application and Promotion Institute (TAPI) under the Department of Science and Technology (DoST) which helps provide incentives to Filipino inventors and inventions. But clearly more is needed.

Some Filipino inventions from the Philippines have won international awards, including for an SMS reader and a solar-powered foot maker. IP Komodo also suspects that more than a few of the 100 or so USPTO patents filed by Filipino inventors each year are from Filipinos living in the US. So Filipino inventiveness is probably not the problem; more likely it is poor awareness of patent value and the lack of a supportive ecosystem in the Philippines. This is what the new policy seeks to address.

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