Kathmandu, Apr. 26
Intellectuals and experts on Thursday stressed the need for comprehensive and integrated national intellectual property policies to protect the Intellectual Property Right (IPR).
They expressed the view while speaking at a function organized to mark the World Intellectual Property Day here in the Capital. They said that due to the lack of an effective implementation of laws to protect IPR, Nepal’s socio-economic and political situations have remained affected.
With the slogan of ‘Visionary Innovators’, this year’s the World Intellectual Property Rights Day was observed.
Bharat Raj Upreti, a Supreme Court judge, said that Nepal has lagged far behind in effectively implementing the IPR strategy due to the lack of proper policies.
He said that the governments should have protected of the IPR as the legal infrastructure for the industrial development of the country.
As Nepal is a member of the World Trade Organization (WTO), the nation should have sent a message to the international community that the country is committed to protecting the intellectual properties.
"We should always be conscious of economic and public health systems of the country and ensure the people’s IPR. An intervention in the existing IPR policies is essential," he said.
He said that that an effective enforcement of laws, amendment to old systems and creation of awareness among all the stakeholders and consumers are a need of the hour.
"Strict legal provisions need be in place and they should encompass some technical issues related to IPR," he said.
More than 600 cases related to IPR were filed at the Department of Industry. But they have yet to be resolved.
Dhruba Lal Rajbanshi, Director General at the Department of Industry, said that the country’s economic development would not be possible without protecting the people’s intellectual property.
He asked the government to formulate a comprehensive and integrated national intellectual property rights policy for attracting more foreign investments.
The department has been working actively for protecting the IP, he said.
He, however, said that the department has yet to decide on various cases concerning the intellectual property rights due to the lack of clear policies.
Dinesh Shrestha, president of the Industry Promotion Committee at the Federation of Nepalese Chambers of Commerce (FNCCI), said Nepal’s efforts to protect intellectual rights have not been sufficient.
He asked the government to establish a separate court to look after the IP.
He called the government for ensuring the people’s rights to property legally and politically for the country’s economic development.
"Treating the intellectual property rights as fundamental rights is necessary to increase investments and accelerate the process of economic development in the country," he said.
At the programme, Raj Kumar Suwal, executive director of CIPN, presented a working paper on ‘Comprehensive and Integrated National Intellectual Policy; Needs and Wants’, while Madhusudan Poudel IP Initiative, made a presentation on ‘Need for Integrated Intellectual Property System in Nepal.’
Meanwhile, speaking at a separate function organized by Nepal Copyrights Registrar’s Office and the Society of Economic Journalists- Nepal (SEJON), registrar Bisu Kumar K.C. said the government was serious about controlling the violation of copyrights.
He suggested that writers and creators should register their works. He also underlined the need to expand the coverage of the Office.