By Rizal Raoul Reyes
The International Trademark Association (INTA) recently stressed that branding is important for products in the digital economy, especially for the millennial market.
?Millennials are loyal to brands and are aware of the corporate social responsibility initiatives of companies and transparency issues,? INTA CEO Etienne Sanz de Acedo said in an interview with reporters on the sidelines of the organization?s presentation held in Makati City.
With this in mind, de Acedo stressed that industries ? especially startups ? must develop their own trademarks and intellectual properties to ensure their products are protected. ?I advise they study the findings in our paper,? he pointed out.
In its impact study, INTA noted that industries which used trademarks significantly created a huge impact on five major economies in the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (Asean) region.
Titled ?The Economic Contribution of Trademark-Intensive Industries in Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore, and Thailand”, the report pointed out that trademark-intensive activities ?generate increased employment across sectors and added contributions to international trade. Trademark-intensive industries are defined as those industries which file more trademarks than other industries?weighted against total employment in that industry.?
De Acedo said the results of the new study ?underscore the immense potential for cross-sectoral economic growth that can be unlocked by promoting the value of trademarks with the business community, government, and the general public, and by further developing national trademark systems and trademark-intensive industries.?
He added: ?As we explore the long-term economic and social implications of trademarks and related intellectual property rights, it becomes increasingly important for both public and private sectors to scale up engagement on this issue, as well as support government efforts to further trademark and brand development and protection, including protection of goods in transit.?
Moreover, he said the report was made significant because the release coincided with the 50th anniversary of the Asean, which has successfully grown to become the world?s seventh-largest market and home to the third-largest labor force over the last half century.
As far as the Philippines is concerned, data from 2012 to 2015 showed trademark-intensive industries within the Philippines generated a 17% direct contribution to GDP and 41% indirect contribution to GDP, showing a direct correlation between trademark-intensive and non-trademark intensive industries. In terms of employment, output, and value-added, the report said workers? share of the workforce represented 15% of total employment.
It observed that trademark-intensive industries in the Philippines comprised 47% of the country?s share of exports, including manufacturing of computers and electronics and related equipment which accounted for around 40% of total manufacturing value added.
“We have been emphasizing the contribution of intellectual property (IP), including trademarks, to the country’s economic development,? noted director general Josephine R. Santiago of the Intellectual Property Office of the Philippines. “We welcome this evidence-based study by INTA because it shows that there is a correlation between trademarks and economic development based on hard data.?