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Resolution of Intellectual Property Issues

The intellectual property question remains unresolved at the federal level, which means that the owners of such property are not completely free to dispose of it as they see fit. Many of our small innovative enterprises got their starts within the walls of research institutes. However, the intellectual property that formed the basis for their activities was created using federal funds. While this question would not have been so controversial five years ago, today the institutes are unwilling to give their research results to private businesses. It is completely understandable that our institutes take such a position, as they must be compensated as organizational developers for the alienation of their intellectual property. Meanwhile, the technology cannot be developed, improved, or implemented without the small innovative enterprises that use it. Consequently, the first thing that is needed is a mechanism for providing research institutes with incentives for transferring technologies to private businesses. Second, conditions must be created so that intellectual property valuation is accessible to the majority of inventors. For this purpose, the regulatory basis for such valuations must be developed in appropriate form, and a system for training licensed evaluators must be established.

Support for High-Tech Product Exports

Commercializing our scientific achievements in foreign markets is of great significance in solving the problem of maintaining Russia's enormous scientific-technical potential. To sharply increase the export of hightech services, equipment, instruments, licenses, and patents, scientists need favorable financial conditions for exports. The state could provide Sberbank with the guarantees for loans on export contracts with documentary letters of credit. These loans would be collateral-free, as scientists do not generally have the appropriate assets. All high-tech services rendered to foreign customers should be exempt from the value-added tax.

Purely bureaucratic obstacles represent an enormous hindrance in export-related activities, with the arbitrariness and incompetence of customs officials being especially troublesome. Customs documentation regarding the export of instruments and equipment should be minimized, and customs activity in general should be strictly regulated.

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