NIPO to introduce online filing system

By Imsha Iqbal 


The National Intellectual Property Office of Sri Lanka (NIPO) is currently working on upgrading the databases of the filing system for Intellectual Property
(IP) related matters to be done online, stated NIPO Director General (DG) Geethanjali Ranawaka on Tuesday (8).


Ranawaka mentioned this during the session on “Sri Lanka’s Intellectual Property Framework” which took place on the second day of the Sri Lanka Investment Forum (SLIF 2021).


The NIPO operates under the purview of the Ministry of Trade. 


The DG said that the upgrading of this online system would be fulfilled with the contribution of the Information and Communication Technology Agency of Sri Lanka (ICTA) and the World Intellectual Property Organisation (WIPO).  


“We are planning to upgrade our (NIPO’s) systems and make available the online filing system for everyone to reach from wherever they are. So that they can see similar trademarks on our (Sri Lanka’s) or global data bases make the comparison a file a complaint,” she said, explaining that the complaint would be accepted free-of-charge on copyright disputes and trade marks. 


She said this while explaining the role of the NIPO as well as on the innovative measures that are going to be taken place with regard to IP in obtaining registrations. 


Further, SLINTEC Legal Practitioner and Consultant Revan Weerasinghe said that Sri Lanka would be equipped with the innovative technology within a decade. 


Weerasinghe said that with the help of the Government and the private sector, in the next five to ten years “a lot of breakthrough innovation will be coming out of Sri Lanka”, elaborating that the country already has human capital with the exposure to cutting edge technology in the apparel sector in terms of of global brands such as Nike. 


He also said that Sri Lanka has reached higher in the IT sector and nanotechnology while stressing that the IT sector collaborating with the apparel sector has made the pathway to profit the country from exporting. 


He said, on a positive note: “We (Sri Lanka) are at the cusp of something big,” implying that there are opportunities in the country which attract investments. 


Apart from Ranawaka and Weerasinghe, this deep dive session of the forum featured eminent lawyers and IP experts in the panel. President’s Counsel Dr. Harsha Cabraal, and President’s Counsel Dr. Dinal Phillips were among the panellists and the session was moderated by Attorney- At- Law Shanaka Cooray.