November 16, 2015 

Malaysia comes second after Singapore in ASEAN in the 2015 International Property Rights Index launched in Kuala Lumpur on Monday 16 November 2015 

Singapore remains as the region’s number 1 and global 5th, while Malaysia retains its global ranking at 28th place out of 129 countries in the 2015 International Property Rights Index (IPRI) launched in Kuala Lumpur today. 

The annual IPRI report is the result of a global study involving 92 international organizations from 65 countries, led by the Property Rights Alliance in Washington DC.  The Southeast Asia Network for Development (SEANET) – a regional research centre hosted by IDEAS –  is a partner in the project.  IPRI is the world’s only index entirely dedicated to the measurement of intellectual and physical property rights.  This year the report represents 99 percent of world GDP and 94 percent of world population.  It has been published annually since 2007, and is now being used as references by Forbes, Financial Times, The Economist, the United States International Trade Commission (USITC), the World Bank, and the International Monetary Fund (IMF).      

The IPRI shows that there is great economic differences between countries with strong property rights protection regime and those without.  Nations in the top quintile such as Finland, Norway and New Zealand enjoy an average national GDP per capita of USD 44,542 while nations in the second quintile have an average GDP per capita of USD 23,786.  The third, fourth, and fifth quintile averages are USD11,086, USD3,377 and USD1,880 respectively.  There is a clear relationship between having high GDP per capita and having strong protection of property rights, indicating that it is important for countries that want to become a high income nation to ensure their rules and laws are geared towards better property rights protection.

The IPRI measures the quality of intellectual and physical property rights protection for economic well-being. The IPRI uses three components of property rights to create a composite score: Legal & Political Environment (LP), Physical Property Rights (PPR), and Intellectual Property Rights (IPR).

This year’s IPRI launch was hosted by SEANET in Malaysia.  Compared to last year, Singapore’s 2015 IPRI scores are as follows:

  • Overall score decreased by 0.1 to 8.1
  • Legal and Political Environment decreased by 0.1 to 8.3 The component indicators are:
    • Judicial independence decreased by 0.3 to 7.8
    • Rule of Law stays the same at 8.5
    • Political Stability stays the same at 7.7
    • Control of Corruption decreased by 0.1 to 9.2
  • Physical Property Rights decreased by 0.1 to 8.1. The component indicators are:
    • Property Rights Protection decreased 0.3 to 8.7
    • Registering Property increaed 0.8 to 9.8
    • Ease of Access to Loans decreased by 0.6 to 5.9
  • Intellectual Property Rights remained the same at 7.9. The component indicators are:
    • Intellectual Property Protection decreased by 0.1 to 8.6
    • Patent Protection stays the same at 8.4
    • Copyright Piracy Level increased by 0.1 to 6.8

Compared to last year, Malaysia’s 2015 IPRI scores are as follows:

  • Overall score increased by 0.1 to 6.6
  • Legal and Political Environment stayed the same at 5.8. The component indicators are:
    • Judicial Independence decreased by 0.1 to 6.4
    • Rule of Law stays the same at 6.0
    • Political Stability increased by 0.1 to 5,1
    • Control of Corruption increased by 0.2 to 5.8
  • Physical Property Rights increased 0.2 to 7.7. The component indicators are:
    • Property Rights Protection decreased by 0.2 to 7.2
    • Registering Property increaed 0.6 to 9.5
    • Ease of Access to Loans stys the same at 6.3
  • Intellectual Property Right remained the same at 6.3. The component indicators are:
    • Intellectual Property Protection increased 0.1 to 7.0
    • Patent Protection stays the same at 7.4
    • Copyright Piracy Level increased 0.1 to 4.6

The top 10 countries in the index are:

  1. Finland
  2. Norway
  3. New Zealand
  4. Luxemburg
  5. Singapore
  6. Switzerland
  7. Sweden
  8. Japan
  9. Canada
  10. Netherlands

The bottom 10 countries are:

  1. Nigeria
  2. Burundi
  3. Zimbabwe
  4. Yemen
  5. Libya
  6. Venezuela
  7. Haiti
  8. Angola
  9. Bangladesh
  10. Myanmar


Lorenzo Montanari, Executive Director of the Property Rights Alliance says: “The 2015 IPRI emphasizes the necessity of property rights for creating a free market and driving economic growth but we also recognize that property rights are first of all a matter of human rights. Property rights are directly related to the values and principles of individual liberty.  This year data was available in countries where it was previously not, which is a good sign for future improvement. There are now 129 countries included in the analysis, up from 97 countries in last year’s edition. Countries that had strong property rights systems experienced significantly higher GDP per capita. In the EU, for example, IP accounts for 26 percent of employment and 39 percent of GDP. Societies undoubtedly achieve greater societal development by protecting property rights of authors, entrepreneurs, artists, innovators and inventors.”

In ASEAN, there are 7 countries included in the index and their ranks are as follows:

Country IPRI Score ASEAN rank Global rank
Singapore 8.1 1 5
Malaysia 6.6 2 28
Philippines 5.1 3 65
Thailand 4.9 4 69


Indonesia 4.9 5 70
Vietnam 4.5 6 85
Myanmar 2.5 7 129

Wan Saiful Wan Jan, Director of SEANET and chief executive of IDEAS, says: “If we look at ASEAN, there is clearly a very wide range between the seven countries.  Singapore is by far the best in the region and number 5 in the world.  Malaysia is number 2 in the region but number 28th globally.  After Malaysia other ASEAN countries are either in the middle or in the bottom groups.  This shows that as a region we still have a lot of catching up to do, especially if we want to see the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) being truly successful.  We cannot have a situation where innovators in Singapore produce new inventions that are traded freely within the AEC, only to be illegally copied in countries whose intellectual property rights protection are bad.  And if we look at physical property rights, we can see that in countries like Myanmar where citizens’ properties are not respected, a lot of refugees are coming out from there because they deny the right to remain and own to their own people.  These wide discrepancies cannot be allowed to persist if we want to see a harmonious community being built.”

The IPRI can be downloaded free from and the detailed results can be found on

Summary executive can be downloaded here.

2015 IPRI Partners

Afghanistan’s Economic and Legal Studies Organization (AELSO), Afghanistan, ▪ Foundation for Economic Freedom, Albania ▪ Fundación Atlas 1853, Argentina ▪ Fundación Bases, Argentina ▪ Fundación Liberdad y Progreso, Argentina  ▪ Fundación Libertad, Argentina  ▪  Institute for Public Affairs, Australia  ▪  My Choice, Australia ▪ Austrian Economics Center, Austria  ▪  F.A. v. Hayek Institute, Austria ▪ The Nassau Institute, Bahamas  ▪ CPA, Bosnia-Herzegovina ▪ Populi, Bolivia  ▪  Instituto Liberdade, Brazil  ▪ Institute for Market Economics, Bulgaria  ▪  Centre Des Affaires Humaines (CEDAH), Burkina Faso ▪ Frontier Centre for Public Policy, Canada ▪ Fundación para el Progreso, Chile ▪  Libertad y Desarrollo, Chile  ▪ Cathay Institute of Public Affairs, China  ▪  Unirule Institute of Economics, China  ▪  Instituto de Ciencia Politica, Colombia ▪ Asociación de Consumidores Libres, Costa Rica  ▪  IDEAS, Costa Rica ▪ Centre de Analisis para Políticas Públicas (CAPP), Dominican Republic ▪ Instituto Ecuatoriano de Economía Politica, Ecuador ▪ The Egyptian Center for Public Policy Studies, Egypt Institute for Economic Studies Europe (IES), France ▪ New Economic School, Georgia ▪ Friedrich Naumann Foundation, Germany  ▪  Institute for Free Enterprise, Germany  ▪  IMANI Center for Policy and Education, Ghana ▪ Greek Liberties Monitor (GLM),  Greece ▪ CIEN, Guatemala ▪ Fundación Eléutera, Honduras ▪ The Lion Rock Institute, Hong Kong ▪ Centre for Civil Society, India ▪ Centre for Policy Research, India ▪ Liberty Institute, India ▪ India Institute, India   Iraq Institute for Economic Reform, Iraq  ▪ Hibernia Forum, Ireland  ▪  Jerusalem Institute for Market Studies, Israel  ▪ Competere, Italy  ▪ Think-in, Italy ▪ Istituto Bruno Leoni, Italy ▪ Institute for Development and Economic Affairs (IDEA), Kazakhstan  ▪ Center for Free Enterprise, Korea ▪ Bishkek Business Club, Kyrgyz Republic ▪ Central Asian Free Market Institute, Kyrgyz Republic ▪ OHRID Institute for Economic Strategies and International Affairs, Macedonia ▪ Institute for Democracy and Economic Affairs (IDEAS), Malaysia ▪ Southeast Asia Network for Development (SEANET), Malaysia/ASEAN ▪ Center of Research and Development (CIDAC), Mexico ▪ Instituto de Pensamiento Estratégico Ágora A.C. (IPEA), Mexico ▪ Fundación Idea, Mexico ▪ EBI Think Tank Institute, Mongolia ▪ Center for Entrepreneurship and Economic Development (CEED), Montenegro ▪ The Arab Center for Scientific Research and Humane Studies, Morocco ▪ Samriddhi Foundation, Nepal ▪ New Zealand Taxpayers’ Union, New Zealand ▪ Initiative for Public Policy Analysis, Nigeria ▪ Civita, Norway ▪ International Research Foundation (IRF), Oman ▪ Alternate Solutions Institute, Pakistan ▪ Policy Research Institute of Market Economy (PRIME), Pakistan ▪ Pal-Think for Strategic Studies, Palestinian Territories ▪ Fundación Libertad, Panama ▪ Contribuyentes por Respeto, Peru ▪  Institute for Liberty and Democracy, Peru ▪ Instituto de Libre Empresa, Peru ▪ Minimal Government Thinkers, Inc., Philippines  ▪ Ludwig von Mises Institute, Poland ▪ Forum Obywatelskiego Rozwoju, (FOR) Poland  ▪ Polish-American Foundation for Economic Research and Education, Poland ▪ Warsaw Enterprise Institute, Poland  ▪ Center for Institutional Analysis and Development (CADI), Romania  ▪  Libek, Serbia ▪ F. A. Hayek Foundation, Slovakia  ▪  The Free Market Foundation, South Africa  ▪  Civismo, Spain ▪ Timbro, Sweden ▪ World Taxpayers Associations (WTA), Sweden ▪ Liberales Institute, Switzerland  ▪  Institute of Future Studies for Development (IFD), Thailand  ▪  Association for Liberal Thinking, Turkey  ▪ Freedom Research Association, Turkey ▪ Bow Group, UK ▪ Institute for Economic Affairs, UK ▪ Property Rights Alliance, USA  ▪ Acton Institute, USA ▪ Center for the Dissemination of Economic Knowledge (CEDICE), Venezuela ▪ Zambia Institute for Public Policy Analysis (ZIPPA),  Zambia    

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