Friday, February 18, 2005

RUSSIA TAKING MOVES TO BOLSTER IP AND PATENTS: The Russian Federal Service for Intellectual Property, Patents and Trademarks (Rospatent) oversees the protection of intellectual property rights in the Russian Federation. Rospatent issues patents and certificates of recognition, and is a state executive body under the jurisdiction of the Ministry of Education and Science.

It takes up to five to six months to register a patent in Russia. Rospatent officials believe this is a decent indicator by global standards, considering the current level of economic activity in the country. However, if we take into account the fact that Russian economy is growing rapidly and the number of applications for patents might increase by 250-350%, the existing resources are naturally insufficient. Accordingly, Rospatent is currently working on the introduction of new information technologies. At present, work is underway to establish an electronic system for patent applications. In the future, new IT-technologies will be used in the entire technological process.

Furthermore, intellectual property legislation has been overhauled in the last few years. The most important developments were the introduction of amendments and addenda to the law On Copyright andNeighboring Rights, and the Patent Law, and the adoption of the Law on Commercial Secrets. In general, Russian legislation in the intellectual property sphere corresponds to international standards. At present, Russia has joined 14 out of 24 international treaties related to this issue. Moreover, the Russian Criminal Code contains two articles specifically dedicated to this problem: Article 146, Violation of Copyright, and Article 147, Violation of Patent Rights. It is the Interior Ministry's responsibility to ensure compliance with these articles.

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