‘Europe must highlight its commitment to strong IP protection during election of next WIPO Director General’ says IP Europe

Marco M. Alemán, Director of the Patent Law Division, WIPO, sets out his vision for international patent protection and the World Intellectual Property Organisation in Brussels.

Today, at a private lunch event hosted by IP Europe, Marco Alemán – one of the five candidates to become the next Director General of the World Intellectual Property Organisation (WIPO) – spoke on the topic of ‘International Patent Protection for European Inventors: a Vision for WIPO’.

At the lunch, attended by representatives of member state permanent representations and IP Europe members, Mr Alemán set out the importance of a well-functioning and consistently applied IP system to the growth of the global economy.

Speaking after the event, Francisco Mingorance, Executive Secretary of IP Europe, said:

“We’re very grateful to Mr. Alemán for spending some time with IP Europe’s members today and look forward hopefully to having a similar chance to hear from the other candidates. IP-intensive telecommunications innovators rely on the health of the global IP system to invest with confidence in the R&D necessary to create future generations of cellular standards like 5G.


The election of the next Director General of WIPO gives the international community an opportunity to re-establish its strong support for the balanced system of Intellectual Property Rights and obligations that underpins the innovation ecosystem.

IP protection needs to be recognised as a priority at the highest political level internationally. Countries around the world can signal their support for IP by favouring candidates with a deep understanding of the patent system and its importance to the global economy.”



The election of the next WIPO Director General, for a six-year term, will take place on the 4th and 5th of March. Established in 1967, WIPO is one of 15 United Nations ‘specialised agencies’. Its particular job is to promote IP Protection, help businesses and individuals obtain IP rights, and increase accessibility to IP information. WIPO regulates systems managing 43 million patent documents.

IP Europe’s ‘Policy Recommendations: 2019 – 2024 EU term’ sets out a number of calls to action to forge an industrial policy that reflects the value of European innovation, enabling a global level playing field to create the world’s leading open digital economy. These include measures to ‘promote a competitive global level playing field and international respect for Intellectual Property Rights’ such as:

  1. Call for high-level international IP protection:

Call on EU trading partners to maintain a reciprocal high level of IPR protection consistent with their international commitments and oppose foreign policies that seek to advantage national champions, such as rules on forced technology transfer.

  • Make IP protection a priority at the highest political level:

Ensure IP protection in third countries is taken up as a political priority at the highest level by EU policy-makers.


Disclaimer: the above-mentioned event was an informal exchange of views and neither IP Europe nor its members explicitly support any candidate for the WIPO Director-General position.

Rory Douglas Home Media Relations, IP Europe
+32 493791528 / rory.douglashome@heklacomms.com

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