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IPR Awareness Scheme for MSMEs

IPR Awareness Scheme for MSMEs

IPR Awareness Scheme for MSMEs

One of the key factors that play a vital role in the market success of a particular innovation is Intellectual Property, or commonly known as IP. It enhances the competitiveness of technology-oriented businesses, as well as facilitates the process of delivering innovative technology to the market. For the sustainability for MSMEs in the present global competitive business scenario, Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) have become essential and critical. This article talks about the Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) Awareness Scheme for MSMEs.

Objectives

To complete with the current global standards and technological challenges, protection of IPR helps to achieve competitive advantage and gains in terms of technology to promote marketing and innovation.  Therefore, it is essential for the Indian MSME Sector to embrace the importance of IPR Protection and the role it plays in boosting innovation in a competitive business environment. The Intellectual Property Awareness Scheme for MSMEs is an initiative by the Government to build up the IP culture in the country.

The following are the objectives of the Scheme.

  • To enhance the awareness of IPR in the MSME Sector to encourage creativity in terms of intellectual endeavour.
  • To take viable measures for the protection of ideas, technological innovations and knowledge-driven business strategies that are developed by MSMEs.
  • To provide appropriate support and facilities for the protection and commercialisation of IP for the benefit of the MSME Sector.
  • To offer assistance to Small and Medium Enterprises with effective use of IPR tools for technology development, market and business promotion, and enhancement of competition.

Activities

The following are the activities conducted under the Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) Awareness Scheme for MSMEs.

Serial Number

Activity

Maximum Grant per Application/ Proposal (INR)

Major Activities

1Financial assistance on grant of patent/ registration under geographical indications of goods/ trademarks
(a)    Domestic PatentINR 1 Lakh
(b)    Foreign PatentINR 5 Lakhs
(c)     GI RegistrationINR 2 Lakhs
(d)    TrademarkINR 10,000
2Assistance for setting up an IP Facilitation CentreINR 100 Lakhs

Minor Activities

1Awareness and Sensitisation Programs on IPRINR 70,000
2Pilot Studies/ Other Studies for Selected Subject/ Clusters/ Group of IndustriesINR 5 Lakhs
3National Level Interactive Seminars/ Workshops/ Conclave/ Conferences/ ExhibitionINR 5 Lakhs
Regional Level Interactive Seminars/ Workshops/ Conclave/ Conferences/ ExhibitionINR 3 Lakhs
4Training Programme for MSME Officials and IPFCsINR 20 Lakhs
5Interaction with the International AgenciesINR 15 Lakhs

Financial Assistance

Below provided are the details concerning the Financial Assistance on Grant of Patent/ Registration under Geographical Indications of Goods/ Trademarks.

Eligibility Criteria

The following are the eligibility criteria for Patent, Geographical Indication and Trademark Reimbursement.

  • For the reimbursement of the actual costs or the expenses that are incurred towards the registration of Trademarks or Patents from the Office of Development Commissioner of MSME, the applicant/ unit/ entity must hold a valid Udyog Aadhaar/ UAM and be registered in the applicant’s name, who is also eligible for reimbursements.
  • For the reimbursement of the actual expenses incurred towards the registration of GI, the entity, be it an agency, association, institutions, institute, NGO, society, non-profit bodies, trusts, similar types of non-commercial bodies and other entities which may not hold an Udyog Aadhaar, is required to provide relevant entity’s incorporation documents and PAN.

Application Procedure

The following is the application procedure for the financial assistance mentioned above.

  • Applicants may choose to apply for reimbursements through the MSME online portal where they would be required to furnish all the relevant details and upload the necessary supporting documents.
  • All applications submitted through the portal will be allocated to the concerned implementing agency for further review, approval and for the release of funds to reimburse the expenses incurred towards the grant of a patent, trademarks and geographical indications.
  • In the case of a dispute, these cases may be forwarded to the Office of the Development Commissioner to seek relaxations based on the merit of the case, if required.
  • Organisations/ Institutes/ Departments of the State Government such as the MSME IPFC, MSME Development Institutes and TCs would act as facilitators and assist applicants in the reimbursement procedure and online application processes.

Assistance for setting up IP Facilitation Centre

The main objective for an IP Facilitation Centre is to guide MSMEs and its stakeholders and other target beneficiaries towards the proper utilisation of IP technology and tools. This would promote the enhanced management of intellectual property needs in a competitive business environment.

Objectives

The following will be the objectives of the IP Facilitation Centre.

  • To offer support and facilities for searching for IPRs that includes evaluation for the possibility of registering for patents, trademarks, industrial designs, and so on.
  • To provide necessary essential information and support regarding filing an IP application for registration or grant of a patent, trademarks, GI, industrial design, copyright, PVP and more.
  • To facilitate IPR transfers and commercialisation of IP technologies.
  • To facilitate collaborations with potential clients to explore possibilities for technological tie-ups and upscale needs of business enterprises.
  • To offer and disseminate information on the best IPR practices.
  • To assist with filing applications with national and international agencies, and the execution of other documents such as licensing, technology transfer agreements and more.
  • To advice on legal remedies that are accessible on issues such as IP infringement, duplication of Patent/ TM/ Industrial Designs and more, to beneficiaries.
  • To conduct research and pilot studies on issues concerning IPRs.

These Facilitation Centres are to work in close quarters with the Nation Patent Offices/ Regional Patent Offices and any other National or International Agencies who administer the implementation of matters related to IPRs.

Eligibility

The following are the agencies that have the eligibility to set up a facilitation centre of the same kind.

  • MSME Development Institutes, Technology Centres and other associated Field Organisations that are directly or indirectly under the control of the Ministry of MSME.
  • Quasi-Government or Government Bodies/ Departments/ Autonomous Organisations that function on the autonomous or commercial lines.
  • MSME Industry Associations, Societies, Cooperatives, Firms, Trust and other profit and non-profit bodies, NGOs that represent or work for MSMEs, Research/ Technical and Educational Institutions, Universities/ Colleges with a track record of assisting MSMEs and so on.

Funding

The Government of India will offer a total financial grant in support that goes up to a maximum of INR 100 Lakhs to each approved facilitation centre. The grant for the establishment of these facilitation centres would be spread over a period of 5 years. The implementing agency will be required to contribute to a minimum of 10% of the total project expense from its own resources.

The grant would be released in instalments after the approval by the concerned authority. The next instalment will be released after the requisite grant utilization certificate, statement of expenditures, final progress of the programme and other essential documents and reports as per the norms of the Government. The amount for each instalment and relevant budget allocation under various heads will be estimated and finalised based on the requirements of IP Facilitation Centre for MSMEs during their establishment and operations phase.

Rules and Regulations

While these facilitation centres are set up, there will be no liability created for the Government. The financial support extended by the Government will cover all the primary expenses of the equipment, devices and hardware essential to operate the centre. This would include the following:

  • Costs for the equipment, devices and hardware necessary to operate IPFC.
  • Fee for Software License
  • Subscription Fee for IP databases
  • Furniture and Fixtures
  • Networking
  • Hiring services of external consultants, including taking on IPFC staffs on a contract basis.
  • Expenses for IPFC operations that comprise of costs on telecommunication and internet connectivity.
  • Office and Computer stationery
  • Marketing and Promotional Activities
  • Travel and Incidental expenses
  • Miscellaneous/ Contingency/ Institutional Administrative
  • Overhead Cost

Furthermore, implementing agencies would provide or arrange the space for setting up of these Centres.

It is expected for the implementing agency to take over the responsibilities of the assets and the operation of the offices. They would run the offices on a self-sustainable basis after a 5-year initial gestation period. These facilitation centres shall create their own funding mechanism with the view to be financially sustainable over a while.

Every IPFC would have a steering committee, and meetings for the same would be organised every 3 months to evaluate the performance of the IPFC. If the centre fails to comply with the conditions of the guidelines, the IPFC would be liable to repay the whole or a part of the amount of the grant along with penal interest.

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