The US has given India a slightly better ranking on intellectual property (IP) parameters in the country. India ranked at 44 out of 50 economies in the sixth edition of the International IP Index 2018 that analyses the intellectual property (IP) climate in 50 world economies, improving its performance both in relative and absolute terms. The International IP Index, put out by the US Chamber of Commerce Global Innovation Policy Center (GIPC), ranks economies based on 40 unique indicators that benchmark activity critical to innovation development surrounding patent, trademark, copyright, and trade secrets protection. In the IP Index where the US secured the top slot with the UK coming in the second position, India moved up from 43 of 45 a year ago. Sweden, France and Germany snatched spots behind the UK, completing the top five. Compared with 25% (8.75 out of 35) of the total score in the fifth edition, India scored 30% (12.03 out of 40) in the sixth edition, representing the largest percentage improvement of any country measured.
The improved performance on the index is partly due to revised computer-related inventions — broadly known as software patents — guidelines issued in July, removing the novel hardware requirement as well as initiatives to expedite injunctive-style relief and disabling of infringing content online. Sources in the US body pointed out India has also been forward-leaning in addressing patent pendency with 459 additional patent examiners, procedural reforms to expedite trademark backlogs, and expanding the list of well-known trademarks. However, it cautioned that to continue the upward trajectory, much work remains to be done to introduce transformative changes to India’s overall IP framework and take serious steps to consistently implement strong IP standards.