Dr. Kamil Idris was the direct general of the Geneva-based World Intellectual Property Organization. He was recently interviewed by VentureOutsource.com and the following is a summary of his comments to the interviewer. He answers questions about maintaining the economies of individual countries as intellectual property is created and then its products are exported.
When asked about a patent system that protects countries with emerging outsourcing locations, Idris stated that the protection would depend on how the country applied the benefits of protecting intellectual property, their national objectives, their level of commitment to IP, their level of awareness, infrastructure and their IP professionals. He also bases the patent system of the innovation of the country and its enabling policy.
When Dr. Idris was asked about curtailing intellectual property theft as a result of globalization, he responded by giving three examples of how it is affected. Idris pointed out that globalization has resulted in the piracy and counterfeiting of IP. It has also slowed down the patent process. He also notes that the globalization of trade has forced employers to train IP professionals, other human resources and to develop greater IP capacity to stop the theft of IP.
Dr. Idris points out the greatest component of IP theft is due to our multi-faceted communications options from email, to test messaging, etc. Digital communications is making it far easier to transfer IP data than it once was.
He also noted that the WIPO Phonograms and Performances Treaty (WPPT) and the WIPO Copyright Treaty (WCT) have made major strides toward creating international copyright protections. The Advisory Committee on Enforcement (ACE) for WIPO is instrumental in helping countries devise and coordinating the setting and enforcing of international IP laws.
Along with communications making IP theft easier, it has also made sharing patent information’s scientific and technological information easier so that the WIPO watchdogs can identify IP thefts accurately. The focus on IP theft has been responsible for driving an increase in patent applications, so much so that countries are now experiencing a backlog in processing patents.
Professor Kamil Idris is now the president of the International Court of Arbitration and Mediation (ICAM) in Geneva, Switzerland. He is a former diplomat for his native country of Sudan. He graduated with honors in law from the University of Khartoum. He has a PhD in international law from the Geneva University.