Remarks by Director Iancu at the Global IP Challenges Forum

Global IP Challenges Forum

Director of the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office Andrei Iancu

October 26, 2020


As prepared for delivery

Thank you, Your Excellency, Dr. Abdulaziz Al-Suwailem, for your kind introduction. And thank you for your vision to organize and host this historic IP20 meeting. It has been an honor to work with you and your colleagues at the Saudi Authority for Intellectual Property (SAIP) as it has unified the Kingdom’s IP offices in support of the goals of Saudi Arabia’s ambitious “Vision 2030.” 

Good morning, good afternoon, and good evening to our fellow IP offices from around the world. The United States looks forward to working with the IP20 offices, the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO), and others to enhance cooperation, to share IP policies, practices and information, and to disseminate IP knowledge. There is a lot that we can do if we work together.

As IP offices, we all understand the importance of IP protection. Indeed, intellectual property has never been more important than it is right now, as we continue the ongoing battle against the coronavirus. 

It is critical that our IP offices encourage and enable the development of innovations and research that will lead us out of this crisis. To that end, we must ensure IP protection for the innovations created by individuals and companies for: new tests, treatments, and vaccines; protective equipment, sterilizers, and ventilators; and so much more that our inventors are developing.  

Cooperation among IP20 offices is, therefore, critically important. From the United States, this includes not only the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, but also the U.S. Copyright Office. And today, I have also been asked to convey to you a few brief additional observations on behalf of that office. 

This year, the U.S. Copyright Office is celebrating its 150th anniversary. The Copyright Office recognizes that collaboration among stakeholders and other IP offices worldwide is essential for the advancement of the arts and culture. Indeed, a new chapter of the Copyright Office begins precisely today. Shira Perlmutter, my friend and former USPTO colleague, starts her service as the 14th U.S. Register of Copyrights today. As we face our current challenges and look ahead, the effective administration of copyright laws ensures the creation, protection, and access to the creative wonders that are copyrighted works. 

Indeed, effective administration of all IP laws is critical, including patent, trademark, copyright, trade secrets, and more. Our offices must protect the value of and respect for all innovation, creativity, and IP within our governments, and our societies. As the 20 leading offices, what we do, and what we say, make a significant impact on the global IP system. We have a responsibility, along with WIPO, to act in harmony to ensure that the global IP system works in an effective and balanced manner, and is responsive to the changing needs of stakeholders. 

Your Excellency, we support the Joint Statement created under SAIP’s leadership. And we look forward to working together and exchanging views on how IP rights can be treated appropriately, thoughtfully, and consistently.

Thank you.