Intellectual property rights refers to the creations of the mind and in essence are inventions, literary and artistic works, and symbols, names, and images used in commerce. Intellectual property is divided into two categories: -

Industrial property which includes patents for inventions, trade marks for brand and trade names, and industrial designs for ornamenting and beautifying an article.

Copyright includes literary and artistic works such as novels, films, music, drawings, paintings, photographs, and sculptures, etc.

IPR is not an abstract issue and it is not something that only concerns the developed world. IPR is the cornerstone and catalyst for industrial and economic growth. It protects and promotes the growth of knowledge and creativity which are very vital resources in today’s societies. When developed and strengthened by an effective IPR system, these resources help improve lives, create jobs, and strengthen national economies.

Though PNG has no success stories on IPR yet, it is a vibrant young country with so much promise and potential. Papua New Guineans have been creative for a long time. Even before the country was exposed to western influence, people made tools, carvings, designs, and all forms of traditional art. With the introduction of modern technology, innovative and creative works can now be used in so many different formats and mediums further, giving rise to the level of innovative and creative activities. For instance, local artists are now producing contemporary and modern works (music, paintings) that may have the potential to be marketed internationally.

Many Papua New Guineans are now educated and some have gone abroad in pursuit of better opportunities. The time is right to harness and nurture IPR, as PNG now has more universities, research institutes and businesses (SMEs) that are exposed to opportunities provided by the advent of information technology (IT).

To promote and encourage the level of intellectual activity in the country, the Government has put in place intellectual property laws to safeguard the rights of creators and authors. IPOPNG being the office mandated to administer the IPR laws is continuing to improve these laws and the administrative systems so that the IPRs are effectively protected and the owner/s benefit fairly from their hard work (investments).

The IPOPNG in consultation with other relevant stakeholders (public and private) is now in the process of finalizing a National IP Plan for the country. The objective of the plan basically is to identify and take stock of IPRs created in the country to promote, protect and enforce them in order to maximize the benefits that may flow from their usage both locally and internationally.

To educate, inform and make aware the public at large, the IPOPNG through the IPA will be observing and marking the World IP Day on 26th April, 2011 by wearing t-shirts commemorating the day, doing an IPR talk show on radio and a nationwide advert on IPR in the two daily papers. The theme for the day will be:

“Designing the Future” Celebrating “WORLD INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY DAY – 26 APRAIL 2011” - Intellectual Property Rights - EM SAVE NA RAIT BILONG YU.

Please feel free to contact our office on any IPR or related queries or make a comment