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Rospatent won’t be a monopolist after all

Source: Grill IP patents news


Rospatent won’t be the patent agency to rule them all, at least for now. Last week, Russian media had reported that the government was planning to set up a United Agency to take charge of all aspects of intellectual property protection – from copyright issues to patents. The journalists even reported a name for the new agency, dubbing it the Federal Intellectual Property Service. However, the story turned was quickly called out to be a figment of their imagination. The Kremlin stated categorally that Rospatent would not take on any such role, while the Ministry of Culture. the Ministry of Economic Development and several others issued similar statements.

Protesting the loudest were – strangely enough – the Ministry of Finance and Russia’s Security Council, albeit without quite giving a clear explanation as to why such an agency should not exist. One reason put forward was that the official “List of posts in the federal services and federal agencies”, drawn from a decree by Russian President Vladimir Putin, does not have any open positions for a “Secretary of State – Deputy Head”. One can only assume that government bureaucrats worry that Rospatent might become a new agency that is considered as important as a government ministry, reporting directly to the Russian government, because only then could it be home to a “Secretary of State.”

That, however, seems to be a rather shallow explanation for the confusion. The creation of any new government agency has to serve the country’s interest and should not be subject to political games. Rospatent currently reports directly to the Ministry of Economic Development; should Rospatent be “promoted” and become an agency in its own right, the Ministry of Economic Development would lose some of its importance and influence.

It appears that the plans for setting up the alleged United IP Agency were already pretty far advanced; insiders even discussed the names of potential bosses for the agency, among them Nikita Mikhalkov, the well-known filmmaker; Oleg Fomichev, the deputy chief in the Ministry of Economic Development; and Sergei Fedorov, chairman of the board of the Russian Authors’ Society. Rospatent’s current boss, Grigory Ivliev, was also said to be on the list, although Russian media suggested that he was unlikely to make the running.

Grigory Ivliev for his part argues that Russia needs a United IP Agency, and nobody seriously suggests otherwise. For now, however, setting up the agency appears to be a work in progress, and only one thing is certain: the Presidential Administration has decided to kick the project down the road. How long it will take until Russia gets its Unified IP Agency, or whether it will happen at all, is a moot question for now.

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Author: grill-ip

Grill IP is a non-profit project for educational and entertaining purposes only. Our aim is to provide quick and easy access to aggregated and original patent news, IP analysis, interesting business cases in IP, basic legal updates and a list of patent transactions.

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