In a move to improve the ecosystem for innovation in India, the Department for Promotion of Internal Industry and Trade (DPIIT) aims to reduce the time taken to examine patents to six months as part of its five year plan from 18 months currently.
India hopes to further improve its ranking among the world’s most innovative economies, and has set an “ambitious” target for itself. “We have made a benchmark that we must complete all our patent examinations in 18 months. Actually, in our five year program, we hope to bring it down to six months,” said DPIIT secretary Ramesh Abhishek during a briefing before the launch of the Global Innovation Index 2019.
“We are definitely hoping for improvement (of our position on the index in 2019), as we have improved in indicators like ease of doing business,” he said. India already jumped to the 57th position on the GII in 2018 from the 81st position in 2015. The index, prepared by the World Intellectual Property Organisation (WIPO), analyses the innovation performance of 129 countries and economies around the world.
This includes the political environment, education, infrastructure and business sophistication. GII 2019, which is being released in partnership with DPIIT and the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) on Wednesday, focuses on innovation in medical technology.
At the same time, global innovation landscape is faced with hurdles of increasingly protectionist measures by countries, which has impacted foreign investment, WIPO director general Francis Gurry said. “There is a tendency not to do things multi-laterally. We see this, of course, all around the world and I think this is a crisis and something we all need to think about…We are becoming increasingly interconnected as a world, but institutional cooperation on international level is in some respects reducing or not keeping pace with way in which technology is bringing us together,” he said.
“There are important signs of closure, not just in any one country by the way. For example, since the G20 dropped its commitment to a reduction of tariffs, we have seen a large number, in fact a higher percentage, of unilateral measures taken by countries in respect of favouring of local champions,” he said, adding that foreign direct investment has been on decline globally over last three years and FDI screening has become “much more stringent”.