Fear of IP theft a “growing concern” for emerging economies


Intellectual property theft is of “fast-growing concern” in emerging economies, new research has revealed.

The research, from law firm Reed Smith LLP and  conducted by economic research company the Economic Intelligence Unit (EIU), has revealed that fear of theft is set to become one of the biggest areas of commercial dispute in the coming years.

The report, entitled Troubled waters: the risks of international commercial disputes found that a third of businesses in the BRICS countries, the collective name for the major emerging economies of Brazil, Russia, India and China and South Africa expect to have an issue over IP theft within the next two years with other developing economies also expressing concern. 

Carolyn Pepper, partner at Reed Smith, said companies which rely heavily on the value of their IP are “increasingly worried” about infringement and do not expect the situation to improve quickly.

She said: “Many businesses will regard these perceived risks as an acceptable cost of conducting business in certain markets, but others won't.

“Unless strong messages are sent out on enforcement companies will continue to be wary and executives may think more carefully about investing in or doing business in territories where they do not think that the protection available for IP rights is as strong as they would like.”

The report is part of Reed Smith’s Business Across Borders research and the findings are drawn from a survey of more than 450 senior executives from multinational businesses worldwide.

This article was first published on 27 June 2013 in World IP Review

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