Jun 11, 2018
In April 2018, the federal government announced a five-year strategy for promoting and protecting intellectual property in Canada. As Meagan Gillmore discusses in her article in Law Times, the proposed strategy will focus on three main areas: updating IP legislation; creating tools and services to help companies grow; and increasing education and awareness of IP among businesses and the general public. Gillmore canvasses intellectual property lawyers for their reactions to the announcement, including Osler’s Nathaniel Lipkus, a partner and intellectual property litigator in the firm’s Toronto office.
“The most exciting part [of the announcement] is the strategic intellectual property tools for growth,” he says, explaining that those tools could distinguish Canada internationally if they’re used properly. The tools include having the Standards Council of Canada collaborate with Canadian businesses to use their intellectual property when developing international standards, as well as a collective that will bring businesses together to help them find IP solutions.
“We want to make sure that companies know they have the support of the government to be involved in the conversations that actually do re-shape the world,” Nathaniel continues. He notes that the government hasn’t always done a good job of protecting the intellectual property of businesses.
“We’ve incentivized spending at other times; for example, on research and development, [but] there’s never been a time that a Canadian government has signalled that intellectual property protection was important for Canadian businesses, and so I feel that we’re doing catch-up,” he says, suggesting that the government could offer incentives such as tax credits for businesses that protect their IP, loans that are partly forgivable or funding a portion of the first patent of a business’s main invention.
Learn more about the recently announced intellectual property strategy by reading Meagan Gillmore’s full article “More incentives needed for emerging businesses” in Law Times from June 11, 2018.