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BOI readies incentives in PH innovation sector

The Board of Investments is set to grant incentives to projects that generate and commercialize patented technologies under the 2020 Investment Priorities Plan.

Trade Undersecretary and BOI managing head Ceferino Rodolfo signed Memorandum Circular 2021-001on Feb. 9, 2021, which identified the commercialization of “uncommercialized patents” as one of the projects falling under the “innovation drivers” activity.

Uncommercialized patents refer to invention patents, utility models or industrial designs that have been granted patent or are registered at the intellectual Property Office of the Philippines but have not delivered economic returns, through means of a spin-off company, licensing or sale.

“The express promotion of patent creation and commercialization, no less than by the biggest investment promotion agency in the country, is a landmark development that will further IPOPHL’s push for Filipinos to harness IP for inclusive business and technological growth,” said IPOPHL Director-General Rowel Barba.

He said the incentives would reinvigorate filings activity, help the Philippines climb higher in the global innovation index and fulfill the goal to transition to a knowledge-based economy.

The 2020 IPP also recognized innovation and technology support offices as “innovation centers” or a community of entrepreneurs and researchers helping find breakthroughs and alternative solutions to address industry challenges.

An ITSO can be a university, college or research center that partners with IPOPHL, that offers access to patent and scientific and technical databases, assistance in using patent databases, training in patent claim drafting and advice on intellectual property management, among others.

ITSOs played a big part in driving utility model and resident-patent filings in 2019, in turn contributing to the Philippines’ hike in the 2020 GII ranking. IPOPHL has 83 ITSO-partners to date.

The IPP’s expansion of IP-related activities is one of the fruits reaped from IPOPHL’s August 2019 memorandum of agreement with BOI. Its objectives include incentivizing IP-generating activities.

Barba’s continued membership at the BOI’s board of governors helped ensure the implementation of the MOA.

“We will continue work in adding more IP-generating activities in the next IPPs. We hope we can succeed, so we can drive more socially relevant and industrially useful IP products and processes into the market,” Barba said.

Other IP-related activities under the rolling three-year plan include generating original content for books with originality being a key criterion for copyrighted works and requiring business incubator hubs to provide IP management and legal consulting services.

Signed by the President in November 2020, the 2020 IPP is in line with government’s pandemic recovery response under the “Bayanihan to Heal as One” Act.

The current IPP aims to modernize the economy, generate decent jobs across the country and help solve societal issues on employment, housing, transportation and safe and secure travel.

Topics: Board of Investments , BOI , 2020 Investment Priorities Plan , Intellectual Property Office of the Philippines , IPOPHL
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