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How international partnerships help boost Saudi intellectual property watchdog’s effectiveness

Realizing the importance of intellectual property in achieving the country’s ambitions to stimulate business growth and economic competitiveness. the Saudi government has established the Saudi Authority for Intellectual Property (SAIP) in 2018  as the competent authority for intellectual property in the Kingdom of Saud Arabia.

SAIP is considered a ‘one-stop-shop’ for all matters relating to the protection, regulation and enforcement of intellectual property rights in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. Its mission is to promote the competitiveness of the national economy, support the growth of the intellectual property culture in Saudi Arabia and highlight the Saudi Authority for Intellectual Property as the main intellectual property center in the MENA region. It is mandated to organize, support, sponsor, protect and promote intellectual property in the Kingdom in accordance with global best practices.

SAIP vision is to be an integrated intellectual property authority with a global perspective and a leading intellectual property moderator in the MENA region.

The last decade witnessed a rising trend of Asia as the biggest producer of intellectual property in the world where 65% of intellectual property applications filed worldwide comes from Asia, and mainly from China, Korea, and Japan.

SAIP focused on the past two years to extend its collaboration with international IP Offices and International organizations as well to achieve different strategic goals. Therefore, it has signed 7 Memorandum of Cooperation with International IP Offices such as the US Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO), China National Intellectual Property Administration (CNIPA), Japan Patent Office (JPO), European Patent Office (EPO), Korean Intellectual Property Office (KIPO), European Union Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO) and UK Intellectual Property Office (UKIPO).

This is in addition to the signed 2 Exchange of Data agreements, and while there is a fast track of patent offices, SAIP has signed 4 Patent Prosecution Highway agreements with those offices to exchange examination reports, which will provide the opportunity to have a fast-track for patent filing through the sharing of patent information between participating offices thereby reducing the workload of patent examiners and improving patent quality.

In addition, TISC and IPTI cooperative programs also were signed with the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO). TISC program aims to establish a national network of technology and innovation support centers, whereas the IPTI program aims to establish an IP training institute at SAIP. In general, those agreements are focused on the exchange of expertise and capacity building, which is crucial to becoming an IP hub in the MENA region. Recognizing the G20 countries represent around 80% of the world’s economic output, two-thirds of the global population and three-quarters of international trade, and around 96% of all patent filings, 91% of all trademark filings, 94% of worldwide design filings, and 73% of creative goods exports were from G20 countries.

On October 26, 2020, the Saudi Intellectual Property and the G20 Saudi Secretariat organized the IP20+ Global Intellectual Property Challenges Forum as part of the International Conferences Program, honoring the G20 Saudi presidency year 2020.

The Forum brought together the Heads of IP offices operating in the G20 countries, WIPO, and other valued guests from all over the world to establish the priorities in response to global pandemics and emergencies, such as harmonizing IP operation measures, sharing IP policies and disseminating IP knowledge.

Based on those priorities, the G20 IP offices released a Joint Statement sharing their common recognition of the importance of IP and an agreement on the future direction of the IP20+ initiatives to overcome global risks.

Since its accession to the World Intellectual Property Organization in 1982, The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia is attaching great importance to intellectual property and is actively working to achieve the organization’s mission to promote innovation and creativity for the economic, social and cultural development of all countries, through a balanced and effective global IP ecosystem.

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