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What is IP?

It is widely accepted that the term "IP" refers to intellectual creations and commercial goodwill that can be protected by law. However, different countries have different laws on what should be safeguarded by IP. Neither the Convention Establishing the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) nor the Agreement on Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS Agreement) provides a direct definition of IP. Instead, they outline various categories of rights that fall under IP and provide definitions and provisions for their protection. Examining the provisions of various IP treaties, we can see that IP protection encompasses several rights and legal relationships, including patents (covering inventions, utility models, industrial designs, and plant patents), copyright and related rights, distinctive signs used in commerce (like trademarks, geographical indications, trade names, and trade dress), new plant varieties, layout designs of integrated circuits, trade secrets or undisclosed information, and repression of unfair competition.

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