To establish Technology and Innovation Support Centres (TISCs), the economic affairs ministry signed agreements with three institutions in the country on June 20 in Thimphu.

The National Focal Point, the Department of Intellectual Property signed the agreement with the three hosts institutions- College of Science and Technology, Jigme Namgyel Engineering College and the Thimphu TechPark.

The ministry also signed a service level agreement of establishing TISCs with World Intellectual Property Organisation.

The TISCs will provide access to about 70 million global patent documents on technological fields as well as to locally based high quality technology information and related services. This is expected to help the innovators further innovate and develop products and services, and to create, protect and manage their intellectual property rights.

TISC is also expected to strengthen the institutional capacity of universities, and research and development institutions to conduct patent search, patent drafting and assist in patent prosecution.

Director General of department of intellectual property Kinley T Wangchuk said that the signing is not only a commitment the department made under the annual performance agreement but it would also have long-term positive impact in boosting and propelling innovation and creativity in the three host institutions. “The access to and sharing of scientific and technical information within a research structure is key to business success as it reduces the time and costs,” he said. “Once the centres become fully operational, we hope that our three host institutions will develop into science and technology incubators for our country.”

Economic affairs minister Lekey Dorji said that patents disclose the invention, modes of carrying out the invention, drawings, and discussions of the background art relating to the invention.

He said that once the centers are established, the institutions would play a central role in helping innovators and creators by providing access to customised, relevant and valuable source of technical information. “Today everyone has come to acknowledge and realise that patents, once registered and published by Intellectual Property offices around the world, are a rich and important source of research and technological information.”

Karma Cheki