• Factors contributing to the strength of national patent protection and enforcement after TRIPS

      Papageorgiadis, Nikolaos; Wang, Chengang; Magkonis, Georgios (2019)
      In this paper we study the determinants of the strength of patent enforcement in 43 member countries of the World Trade Organization (WTO) between 1998 and 2011, a period after the signing of the Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS) agreement. We do so by building on and expanding the seminal work of Ginarte and Park (1997) on the pre-TRIPS determinants of patent rights in the years 1960-1990. We find that in the years after TRIPS was signed, the strength of patent enforcement of a country is positively determined by two variables that signify the usage of the patent and intellectual property system, and the number of patent and trademark applications. We also find that the level of research and development expenditure, the quality of human capital, and the level of development of a country have positive effects on the strength of the enforcement of patent law in practice. Intellectual property rights enforcement is one of the key investment-related policies included in the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) Investment Policy Framework for Sustainable Development. Identifying the determinants of strong patent systems will help policymakers at the national and supranational levels to design and implement effective policies that strengthen national patent systems, thereby enhancing economic benefits such as greater levels of commercialization of intangible assets and greater levels of international trade and investment.