By Maximilian Clarke

A landmark agreement to enforce intellectual property rights has been reached between the UK and Mexico in a bid to nurture small businesses and provide a boost to the two economies.

The new Memorandum of Understanding will improve international cooperation between the two nations on issues involving copyright, patents, trademarks and designs.

“This agreement will allow the UK and Mexico to share best practice in areas such as enforcing intellectual property rights and to address the issue of global patent application backlogs,” said Minister for Intellectual Property Baroness Wilcox. “It will also support SMEs looking to protect their rights in Mexico and the UK, giving them the best opportunity to grow their business and boost the economy.

“Mexico is an influential voice on issues of intellectual property in Latin America. The Government is building links with international partners to encourage the growth of innovative business across the globe.”

The agreement follows the UK Government’s acceptance of the recommendations made in the Hargreaves Review of Intellectual Property and Growth; a focal point of the Government’s Growth Review set out in the 2011 Budget.

The Review highlighted that the UK should continue to pursue international interests in intellectual property. This MoU will provide support for businesses in the UK and help them to achieve their growth potential overseas, benefiting the UK economy.

The UK’s International Strategy for Intellectual Property set out how the UK would do this, including building key bilateral partnerships.

The agreement was signed today (24 October) in Mexico City by the General Director of the Mexican Institute of Industrial Property, Dr. Rodrigo Roque and witnessed by David Frost, Head of Trade Policy at the Department of Business, Innovation and Skills. The IPO’s Chief Executive John Alty had pre-signed the agreement in the UK.

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