The capacity of developing countries to use the intellectual property system to spark innovation and creativity was cited as one of three major challenges facing the international IP community by WIPO Director General Francis Gurry on Monday.

Speaking at the opening of the annual Assemblies of the Member States of the World Intellectual Property Organization, Gurry also identified the management of demand of IP applications and the migration of all cultural content to the Internet as the two other challenges.

Deep engagement and commitment among WIPO's member states are required to address these challenges successfully, he said. "The atmosphere amongst member states has greatly improved. Delegations are very constructively engaged in looking for solutions," he said.

Gurry reaffirmed WIPO's commitment to enhancing the capacity of the least-developed and developing countries and noted progress in improved delivery of capacity-building services.

Dealing with increased demand for IP rights globally will involve "action on many fronts, including more efficient use of WIPO's Global IP Systems, some legislative action, work-sharing arrangements and improved technical infrastructure. To develop the answer, the international community is going to need an advanced capacity to agree," he said.

Just last week, WIPO released an overview of IP activity in 2009, the last year where full data are available, with overview on patents, utility models, trademarks and industrial designs, which serves as a quick reference guide for IP statistics gathered from 90 IP offices around the world. It also provided IP statistical country profiles for policymakers, researchers and the general public with user-friendly access to IP statistics for individual countries.

The Assemblies takes place through Oct. 5 in Geneva.