RESEARCH PROJECT TOPIC ON THE ROLE OF INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY (IP) LAW IN THE GROWTH OF SMALL AND MEDIUM ENTERPRISES (SMES) IN NIGERIA
1.1 BACKGROUND OF THE STUDY.
The world over, entrepreneurship and small and medium enterprises (SMEs) have provided effective means of greater employment and improving the standard of living for people. SMEs are regarded as the engine of economic growth and development in most developing countries. The contributions of the SMEs in industrial sector to the Nigeria’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) are valued at about 46% thereby making it the second largest contributor to the nations GDP after the oil sector. SMEs are also perceived as the key to Nigeria’s economic growth, poverty alleviation and employment generation but their unimpressive performance in employment generation in recent year has generated a lot of research interests on their challenges and prospects.
It is in recognition of the immense contribution of the SMEs to national development that Intellectual Property (IP) has stepped up to provide for protection, promotion and support for the SMEs.
IP is the product of one’s intellectual activity and consist of different areas of creativity. These areas include industrial property and copyright and related rights. Intellectual Property Rights (IPRs) on the other hand are those rights derived from intangible property that protect innovation and reward innovative activity.
 Agango, O. “Government’s Drive Towards SMEs Development in Nigeria”, A Paper presented at the UK – Nigeria SME Networking Event held in Abuja, on Thursday, March 7, 2 013.
 Ayanda, A.M, Laraba, A.S., SMEs as a Survival Strategy for Employment Generation in Nigeria, Journal of Sustainable Development, Vol.4, No.1, February, 2011, p.201
 WIPO Publication, What is Intellectual Property, WIPO Publication No. 450(E) p.3.