IP registration on the rise

If the trend maintains for the rest of the year, local filings can go up to 19,792

By NUR HAZIQAH A MALEK

Awareness among intellectual property (IP) owners is on the rise with a steady increase in the number of filings for various components, with trademark registration reporting the highest growth.

The Intellectual Property Corp of Malaysia (MyIPO) DG Datuk Shamsiah Kamaruddin said trademark filing recorded a 0.05% year-on-year (YoY) increase between 2016 and 2017.

“Between January 2013 and March 2018, we recorded 103,045 local applications for this IP component.

“From 2015 to 2016, the filings grew by 0.16%,” she told The Malaysian Reserve (TMR).

As of March 2018, the total number of trademark filings was 4,948. If the trend maintains for the rest of the year, local filings can go up to 19,792.

A trademark is a sign that distinguishes the products and services of one trader from others, which includes words, logos, pictures, names, letters, numbers or a combination of any of these features.

Having one provides exclusive rights to the traders to use their marks in trading, and rights to take legal action for infringement under the Trade Mark Law against others who use their marks without consent.

Trademark filing also issues registration certificate by the Registrar Office as a prima facie evidence to establish trademark ownership of the goods when exported.

Apart from trademark, other IP components that top the list in application filings are patents, industrial design, geographical indication and copyright.

As of March 3, 2018, patents filings of local applications totalled 8,017, while industrial designs saw 4,332 filings followed by the geographical indication, which posted only 80 local applications.

Under the copyright component, 13,429 applications were in the literature segment, followed by 2,893 in arts, 747 in films, 260 in music, 410 in audio recordings and 228 in publications.

Shamsiah said almost 60% of IP filings in Malaysia were filed by foreign applicants, based on IP application data collected by MyIPO.

“Out of the total filings made in 2017, 28,888 were foreign, while 21,300 were local,” she said.

According to MyIPO Statistical Booklet 2017, the top 10 foreign country applications were from the US, Japan, followed by China, Singapore, Germany, the UK, Korea, Switzerland, France and Taiwan.

TMR previously reported that awareness programmes should be run with stakeholders to increase the number of local filings.

According to IDEAS‘ (Institute for Democracy and Economic Affairs) paper on the “Challenges in Improving IP Rights in Asean”, high rates of Internet piracy and the prevailing book piracy still stays widespread despite the country’s success in improving its IP rights enforcement.