IPOPHL Widens Footprint in Mindanao

Published on November 20, 2019

The Intellectual Property Office of the Philippines (IPOPHL) has opened its 15th Intellectual Property Satellite Office (IPSO) in the country, set up in the highly urbanized city of Butuan. 

On Wednesday, Nov. 20, IPOPHL inaugurated the 15th office, as housed in the Caraga Regional Office of the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI).  IPOPHL Director General Atty. Josephine Rima-Santiago led the inaugural ceremony together with DTI Provincial Director of Dinagat Island Arnold Faelnar, as witnessed by Bureau of Trademarks Director Atty. Leny B. Raz;  City Councilor John Gil Unay, representing Butuan City Mayor Ronnie Vicente Lagnada; DTI Provincial Directors Romeo Oribe of Surigao del Sur and Celestino Negapatan of Surigao Del Norte; Director for the Cooperative Development Authority in Caraga Genaro Pogata, Jr.; Field Operations officers and staff members of IPOPHL; and officers of partner-agencies and stakeholders from the business sector, academe, and local government units. 

IPOPHL has recently been aggressive in launching IPSOs in the aims of fostering a national ecosystem of creativity and innovativeness that is inclusive of the considerable contribution of the countryside.

"IPSOs have significantly helped increase the  awareness of the countryside on IP. Seeing the benefits of setting up IPSOs directly to where there is great potential for the making of the next greatest success story on IP, we will continue our expansion to the farthest areas of the country," IPOPHL Director General Josephine R. Santiago said. 

With the launch of the Butuan IPSO, IPOPHL will, in collaboration with relevant agencies, provide more platforms for IP activities that will sow seeds of innovation and creativity in the Caraga region, home to 18,000 MSMEs who are considered the engine of the country's economic growth. 

IP to further Caraga's burgeoning growth

IPOPHL has decided to expand in the Caraga Region following its observation of an impressive rise in the number of IP filings in its cities and its countryside. 

IPOPHL data show that Caraga’s total filings soared nearly five-folds to 172 in 2018 from 37 in 2017. Applications for utility model registration jumped 1367% to 88 in 2018 from 6 in the previous year; trademarks grew 173% to 71 from 26; and patents increased 16% to 13 from 5.

"These growing figures may be attributed to increased awareness and interest, and improved effectivity in the use of the intellectual property system in the region," DG Santiago said. 

"The establishment of the IPSOs in selected key areas of the country is a strategic initiative to expand IPOPHL’s reach to the countryside to promote the effective use of the intellectual property system as a vehicle for economic growth and development,"  she added.

Meanwhile, Butuan City makes for the perfect spot to establish an IPSO, the city being a strategic trading hub in the Caraga Region. It has major roads connecting it to other major cities such as Davao, Cagayan de Oro, Malaybalay, Surigao while with the Tandag route construction is in progress.   

"With IPOPHL services made closer to home, the people of Butuan City, and even the broader Caraga Region will be encouraged to push up its level of innovativeness and creativity," DG Santiago said. 

The Butuan IPSO also stands as the 5th IPSO rolled out in Mindanao, following  Zamboanga, Cagayan de Oro, Davao, and General Santos. 

By year-end, IPOPHL's IPSO network will stretch to 16 as it is set to open another on Friday, November 22, in Vigan City in Ilocos Sur, another area with a bustling economy.