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TORONTO — BlackBerry Ltd. may own Canada’s most valuable patent portfolio, but former co-chief executive Jim Balsillie thinks policies designed to protect intellectual property do more harm than good.

Speaking Tuesday at an intellectual property and innovation conference in Toronto hosted by the Centre for International Governance Innovation, a think tank he founded, Balsillie urged the nation’s policy makers to re-think their approach. Stronger intellectual property protections are mostly beneficial to countries that already have strong innovation and a stockpile of valuable patents – and Canada is not one of those countries, he said.

“Canada doesn’t own much intellectual property, so we continue to compete by lowering our dollar and our...

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