New Report Reveals Importance of Trademarks to Panamanian Economic Activity, Employment, and International Trade
Published: October 28, 2019
* Released today, a study by two major organizations of 10 Latin America and Caribbean countries finds trademark-intensive sectors contribute US $9.9 billion to Panama’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP)
Panama City, Panama—October 28, 2019—Twenty percent higher wages is just one of the benefits of trademark-intensive sectors to the Panamanian economy, a new report released today by the International Trademark Association (INTA) and the Inter-American Association of Intellectual Property (ASIPI) reveals.
The report, entitled Trademarks in Latin America: Economic Impact in 10 Latin America and Caribbean Countries, looks at 10 countries in the region and studies how trademark-intensive sectors contribute to the economies of each. The research was conducted by Fundación de Investigaciones Económicas Latinoamericanas (FIEL) in Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Dominican Republic, Guatemala, Mexico, Panama, and Peru.
The 10 countries were selected because they account for nearly 90 percent of the region’s combined Gross Domestic Product (GDP), and the levels of trademark activity differs from country to country.
The study found each country has between 13 and 21 trademark-intensive sectors from a total of 45. Costa Rica has the most, while Guatemala has the least. Panama has 15. Pharmaceutical products and cosmetics and cleaning products are part of trademark-intensive sectors across all of the countries, while clothing and footwear, food products, and communications and entertainment also feature prominently.
In Panama, trademark-intensive sectors contribute 16 percent to the country’s GDP, which equates to US $9.9 billion, according to the report. That percentage of contribution is below the 22 percent average across the region.
Industrial sectors in Latin America and the Caribbean with a higher focus on protecting trademarks pay higher wages than the lesser-focused sectors. The report found companies pay their employees an average of 19 percent more, yet the wages in Panama surpass this figure; its 20 percent premium marks the fourth highest salary differential across the 10 countries.
The report also reveals a 13 percent contribution to employment in Panama, meaning that for roughly every eight jobs in the country, one is from a trademark-intensive sector. The average contribution to employment across the 10 Latin American countries is 18 percent — that is 35 million jobs, almost nine times Panama’s population.
The study is the largest of its kind that focuses on Latin America and the Caribbean, building on a 2016 study released by INTA and ASIPI that analyzed the economic impact of trademark-intensive sectors across five countries, including Panama.
“The new report highlights the important role trademarks play in Latin America and the positive impact of trademark-intensive sectors on people’s lives”, Etienne Sanz de Acedo, Chief Executive Officer of INTA, said on the sidelines of a general session at ASIPI’s Annual Meeting in Lima, Peru.
“The findings are very encouraging, and it’s now up to policy makers to help accelerate the growth of trademark-intensive sectors by implementing stronger and more efficient trademark protection and enforcement systems,” Mr. Sanz de Acedo noted. “This can invigorate local businesses to develop goods and services that will enable them to explore cross-border business opportunities, and can attract more direct investment internationally, technological know-how, and talent, which in turn will assist the movement up the value chain. These efforts will bode well for brands, consumers, the economy, and society at large.”
Sectors with a strong focus on trademarks are responsible for 71 percent of Panama’s exports—the highest across the region—and account for 45 percent of the country’s imports. Across all 10 countries studied, trademark-intensive sectors contributed an average of US $17.80 to every US $100 exported, while trademark-intensive sectors were responsible for US $28.70 of every US $100 imported.
“Intellectual property as a whole, and trademarks in particular, have proven to be an ally for development in the Latin American countries,” said Elisabeth Siemsen, President of ASIPI. “Trademark systems favor economic growth and foster job opportunities; they are a relevant element to inform consumers and support consumers’ choice and, being not only a source identifier but also an information condenser, trademarks assist greater transparency in market economies.”
Ms. Siemsen added: “To support this positive role of trademarks, governments need to continue to strengthen the existing legal frame and the institutions with competence in the granting of rights and its enforcement. ASIPI is satisfied in joining efforts with INTA in the development of the impact study, which ASIPI foresees as a solid and illustrative reference in support to local—among other—economic, investment, and trade policies.”
Finally, the study finds the extent and reach of the contribution of trademark-intensive sectors to the economies in the selected Latin American countries aligns with the documented impact of trademark-intensive sectors in the United States and European Union, taking into account the differences in development between the areas.
To develop the study, FIEL reviewed available specialized literature, collected all relevant data on trademarks and economic data from the respective intellectual property offices of the 10 countries under analysis and of the World Intellectual Property Organization, and elaborated the corresponding estimates on the impact of the trademark-intensive sectors.
Note to Editor
A sector is considered trademark-intensive if at least one of the following conditions is met:
About the International Trademark Association
The International Trademark Association (INTA) is a global association of brand owners and professionals dedicated to supporting trademarks and related intellectual property (IP) to foster consumer trust, economic growth, and innovation. Members include more than 7,200 trademark owners, professionals, and academics from 187 countries, who benefit from the Association’s global trademark resources, policy development, education and training, and international network. Founded in 1878, INTA is headquartered in New York City, with offices in Brussels, Santiago, Shanghai, Singapore, and Washington, D.C., and representatives in Geneva and New Delhi. INTA has a regional presence with the offices in Santiago, Chile, and 745 member organizations in Latin America. For more information, visit www.inta.org.
About the Inter-American Association of Intellectual Property
The Inter-American Association of Intellectual Property (ASIPI) is considered the most important organization in the field of intellectual property in Latin America, devoted to protecting the collective interests of its members through studies and dissemination of intellectual property, as well as to promoting its regulatory development and defense in the Americas.
These cookies are used to identify a user’s browser as the visitor goes from page to page on the Site. These are session cookies, which means that the cookie is deleted when you leave the Site. It is an integral piece of the Site software and used to let the server know which users are on the Site at any given time and make certain parts of the Site easier to use.
If you disable this cookie, we will not be able to save your preferences. This means that every time you visit this website you will need to enable or disable cookies again.
These cookies are used to collect information about how visitors use our Site. The cookies collect information in anonymous form, including the numbers of visitors to the Site, where visitors have come to the Site from, the pages they visited and how they have interacted with tools on the Site like search and embedded media players. We use the information to compile statistical reports of our users’ browsing patterns so that we can improve the Site.
Please enable Functionality Cookies first so that we can save your preferences!
These cookies are used to deliver advertising relevant to the interests of visitors to our Site. They are persistent, which means they will remain on your device after you leave the Site.
- Facebook (Ad Pixel)
- Google (Ad Pixel)
- LinkedIn (Ad Pixel)
- Quattro Anonymous
Please enable Functionality Cookies first so that we can save your preferences!