BusinessEurope: A solid intellectual property system is key for EU business

Today, BusinessEurope published its priorities for the next institutional cycle in the area of intellectual property (IP). We propose a comprehensive strategy on IP with concrete actions to help IP deliver its well-recognised benefits to companies, citizens and society at large. Intellectual property is a fundamental tool to drive innovation, growth, competitiveness and job creation in Europe.

BusinessEurope Director General Markus J. Beyrer said:

“Innovators, creators and businesses must be able to rely on a solid intellectual property system in the EU. European companies need an effective enforcement of IP rights and our discussions on industrial policy in Europe must include IP rights as they today include innovation and competitiveness.

EU businesses are facing intense competition from third countries and need a level playing field, namely the same IP standards worldwide. The EU should maintain a high-quality and coherent IP strategy when discussing any bilateral trade agreements, as well as possible revisions of WTO rules.

The acceleration of technological progress and the digital revolution open up new opportunities, but also create new challenges in the IP environment. The EU must ensure a good balance between IP protection and legal certainty to encourage new technologies.”

Key figures:

  • IP-intensive industries generate around 42% of EU GDP translating into 28% of all jobs in the EU (60 million). They also account for about 90% of EU trade with the rest of the world (Source: EPO/EUIPO).
  • Companies applying for IPR protection employ more people than companies without IPR. Firms registering IP rights have around 28% higher revenue per employee and pay on average 20% higher wages than firms that do not register those rights (Source: EPO-EUIPO).
  • SMEs with prior IPR activities are more likely to grow than other SMEs (Source: EPO-EUIPO).
  • Imports of counterfeit and pirated products into the EU amounted to EUR 121 billion in 2016, which represents up to 6.8% of EU imports, against 5% of EU imports in 2013 (Source: OECD-EUIPO).
  • Industrial espionage and theft of trade secrets caused €60 billion loss of economic growth, innovation and put 289.000 jobs at risk in 2018 (Source: European Commission).

Read our strategy on IP here .

Source: BusinessEurope