1. The management of the research and development (R&D) of government institutes is strengthened
The Korean government strengthens the intellectual property (IP) management of patents/technologies and the like owned by the government institutes, to raise the investment productivity of the R&D of government institutes to a level of 7% , which is equal to that of advanced countries, by 2015.
For the strengthening of IP management, the government decided to develop a technology which will be valuable and to strengthen the management system of prospective IP.
In addition, the government has a plan to lead a related technology to be rapidly commercialized by taking prompt approval procedures (called fast track). Further, the government has a plan to easily and promptly progress the commercialization, by outsourcing a technological transfer project to outside companies and by establishing a technology holding company, to enhance the effects of the technical transfer.
These plans are the actions following the practical strategies and implementation tasks of the ‘plan for implementing the efficient operation of government institutes in the scientific technology field’, which was decided by the National Science & Technology Council in July 2008.
2. The Korean Intellectual Property Office (KIPO, Commissioner: Jung-sik KOH) will support the creation of Korean standard patents by the industry-university-institute
KIPO announced to set out to fully support the creation of standard patents by the Korean industry-university-institute by inputting a budget of 1.5 billion Korea Won, so that the Republic of Korea can grow a global lead of standard patents.
To this end, KIPO will analyze the patents in the six (6) IT fields including 3D TV, next-generation electronic tag (RFID: radio frequency identification) and Giga bit wireless LAN, among others, where standardization is urgently required, and will present the standardization directions in this year. KIPO will also evaluate the patents owned by the industry-university-institute, to determine any standard patents and promote a standard patent mentoring project.
Further, KIPO will build standard patent database by using the standard patent list and patent original text, among others, of the International Organization for Standardization and the Standard Patent Pool, to provide services through the standard patent portal site during the first half of this year.
The head of the Electric and Electronic Examination Bureau of KIPO said, “securing high value-added standard patents has been raised as an essential task in preoccupying technologies and strengthening market competition….[KIPO] will continuously expand and promote the supporting policy to create the standard patents having great economical effects.
3. The government and a private company will adopt an aggressive action against the ‘Patent Troll’
A second patent management company of a scale of 500 billion Korea Won will be established jointly by the private sector and the government, to take action against the US Patent Troll.
A first patent management company (IP Cube Partners Co., Ltd.) was established in February 2010. Since the scale of the second patent management company is greater by about 20 times that of the first one, an aggressive action against the foreign Patent Troll is expected.
According to the authorities concerned and the relevant industries, the Ministry of Knowledge Economy (MKE) will establish a ‘Creative Capital Corporation’ in June of this year. This corporation is a patent management company having a total scale of 500 billion Korea Won, including the private capital of 3000 billion Korea Won. The government plans to input a budget of 2000 billion Korea Won by 2015. During the same period, the private sector will provide the rest of the capital.
The government budgets for this year and the next year are set at 6 billion Korea Won and 70 billion Korea Won, respectively. The private capital of 30 billion Korea Won will be invested by the end of this year.
The capital will be used for buying IP rights including patents. This content is included in the ‘project of using national technological assets’ by MKE. This project has been selected as an object having preliminary feasibility by the Ministry of Strategy and Finance.
Acceptable patents are expected to be considerable in scale and number. IP Cube Partners has a plan to buy the ideas or inventions of universities and institutes which are not patented and to proceed with the patent registrations of those ideas or inventions and commercialization thereof as major businesses. Whereas, it is said that Creative Capital Corporation will deal with foreign patent trolls which offensively buy Korean patents and it will also directly act as one that takes over foreign excellent patents.
4. The number of 3D-related patent applications is increasing as the 3D era opens
As the Korean and foreign manufactures of home appliances have fully developed the 3D TVs, the number of 3D-related patent applications is increasing.
According to the KIPO’s report dated April 8, 2010, the number of the 3D TV-related patent applications is 265 for 2009, an increase of two plus times the number (128) of applications filed in 2004, five(5) years ago.
The patent application tendency for the last ten (10) years can be classified by detailed technologies as follows: Among a total of 1366 cases, 920 cases (67%), the most, are related to the stereoscopic video generation and display technology, 202 cases (15%) are related to the stereoscopic video acquisition and edition technology, 154 cases (11%) are related to the stereoscopic video coding and transmission technology, and 90 cases (7%) are related to the photographing and camera technology.
Specifically, in the video generation and display technology fields which have more hardware features, the patent application filing ratio of companies is 74%. This high percent is interpreted as being the strategies of the companies to strengthen market control by using the preoccupancy of patents as the markets are expected to expand. “Since standards regarding 3D TV and 3D broadcasting are not yet determined internationally as well as nationally, it is important to create ‘standard patents’ in the future”, said Mr. Jung-sik KOH, the Commissioner of KIPO.