Intellectual property facilitation centre soon

It will make process easier for getting geographical indicator tag for products

The Federation of Indian Micro and Small and Medium Enterprises (FISME) is planning to set up an intellectual property facilitation (IPF) centre in the City.

Once the IPF centre becomes operational, it will be easier to get geographical indicator (GI) tag for hundreds of products in accordance with the World Trade Organisation (WTO) agreement.

FISME will set up IPF centres at Bangalore, Hyderabad and New Delhi, which will assist individuals and entities in registering patents and searching and maintaining portfolio.

The facilitation centers will also advice the MSME’s with technical and legal advice in utilising patent-related matters. Besides, the online portal of MSME to register Intellectual Property Rights will be launched in the month of April.

“There is a great potential for disseminating the know-how of GI and intellectual patent in Karnataka that already has the highest number of 24 registrations in the country,” said Karamjeet Singh Saluja, Deputy Director of Indian Patent Registration, FISME.

According to the Controller-General of Patents Designs and Trademarks of India, as of July 2012, only 178 Indian origin products such as Hyderabadi Haleem, Dharwad Pedha, Tirupati laddu, Bikaner Bhutani, Darjeeling Tea, Mysore Agraphias, Coorg Orange, USAir Jasmine, Feni have got GI recognition under the WTO agreement.

Ever-increasing demand

“The global demand for the distinct identity of the Indian produce is ever increasing. Various sectors, especially cottage industries and Information and Communication Technology, have to come forward and register their products,” he said.

GI would certify that the product has certain unique qualities that prevail only in its original geographical location. It offers legal protection to the registered product and prevents the misrepresentation or unauthorised use of the GI products, thereby promoting the sales of only the genuine products.

“GI patent is a boon to the regional businesses, since their ownership is not restricted to an individual but is registered and extended to an entire community through a registered association,” Saluja said.

A Ministry official from Delhi, familiar with the patenting issues, said that initially the industries showed interest in patenting their products after the 2003 WTO agreement. But due to corruption, lengthy processing time and shortage of manpower at the Indian Patent Office, the industry kept away and worked with some sort of informal understanding among their peers.

If the department can work on these defects, then probably some sort of revival is possible, he said.

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