Thursday, October 14, 2010

IP Rights Monetisation Crucial For Malaysia's High-income Economy Aim

KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 14 (Bernama) -- It is crucial to look at monetising intellectual property (IP) rights as a way to transform Malaysia into a high-income economy, Deputy International Trade and Industry Minister, Datuk Mukhriz Mahathir.

"IP is an important element in most bilateral economic and bilateral agreements.

"The Trans-Pacific Strategic Economic Partnership Agreement, which Malaysia is now a member, also includes IP as one of the priority elements in the negotiations," he said here Thursday.

Mukhriz said this in his keynote address at the MSC Malaysia IP Rights Monetisation Forum 2010, organised by the Multimedia Development Corp.

He said stakeholders usually claimed their IP rights as a defensive mechanism to prevent infringement of such rights, or loosely speaking, in defending against attacks from third parties.

"However, the companies now enforce their IP rights as a way to improve their competitive edge, generate revenue and improve their access to financing," he said.

Mukhriz said the IP landscape was changing in that it was no longer regarded merely as a protective legal shield for corporations but it was increasingly used as a strategic and business tool for value generation.

"IP rights are like any tangible assets that can be licensed, assigned, franchised, merchandised and possibly put up as collateral for a specific duration or on permanent basis," he said.

He said in the US, the intangible assets, which encompassed IP rights, had surpassed tangible assets to become the principal contributor to the market value of many major companies listed on the stock markets.

"It is interesting to note that Microsoft's physical assets comprise only one per cent of its total market value.

"The US' IP is estimated to be worth over US$5 trillion, more than the nominal gross domestic product of any other country in the world," he said.

Mukhriz said there was a clear correlation between IP and capital market success, where even after the economy rebounded, firms that slashed their investments in IP may severely lag behind those that maintained their IP strategies.


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