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New report on intellectual property protection out


International Chamber of Commerce PHOTO:

International Chamber of Commerce PHOTO:

The International Chamber of Commerce (ICC’s) Business Action to Stop Counterfeiting and Piracy (BASCAP) has launched a report aimed at promoting and protecting intellectual property in Nigeria.

The report was presented to the public during the Anadach workshop on the topic: ‘The Dynamic Dole of Intellectual Property in Promoting innovation and Economic Development in Emerging Markets’ held recently in Lagos. ICC Nigeria’s Secretary General, Mrs. Olubunmi Osuntuyi, who presented the report alongside the Vice Chairman, Mr. Raymond Ihyembe to the public, said the report “acknowledges that economic growth needs a strong legal framework that protects Intellectual Property Rights (IPL) and encourages innovation, research and development of indigenous products”.

The report entitled “Promoting and Protecting Intellectual Property in Nigeria”, they said, received valuable input, support and endorsement from ICC Nigeria, including from key local partners like the Standards Organisation of Nigeria (SON), the National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC), the African Intellectual Property Group (AIPG) and the Intellectual Property Law Association of Nigeria (IPLAN).

Results of the report revealed that Nigeria has increasingly become both a target destination and significant transit route for counterfeit and pirated products. This situation, the report stated is related to several factors like corruption, outdated legislation and weak enforcement mechanisms, including a lack of national policy on combating counterfeiting and piracy.

Investment, trade and economic growth are being penalized by the negative effects of these illegal practices that also affect consumers’ health due to counterfeit practices in sensible industries like pharmaceuticals and cosmetics. In addition, the report stressed the importance of intellectual property enforcement and documents some of the challenges that Nigeria faces in relation to Intellectual Property Rights (IPR).

Encouraged by the tremendous support the report has received, Mrs. Osuntuyi expressed optimism that this partnership with BASCAP will enhance the needed impact in our advocacy efforts on IP.

She added, “Beyond the conference, ICC Nigeria plans to work with BASCAP to sustain this laudable drive by having more workshops and seminars to bring to fore the importance of the subject matter amongst stakeholders.” The purpose of this BASCAP report is to put forward a set of policy and legislative recommendations that stakeholders in Nigeria can use forreducing counterfeiting and protecting economic growth with a strong IPRsystem. In the case of Nigeria, it is important to have national policies that create awareness of the importance of IP.

These recommendations are in line with BASCAP’s commitment to make the fight against counterfeiting and piracy a public policy priority and in collaboration with ICC Nigeria the aim is to help the Government achieve these important goals. International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) is the largest, most representative business organization in the world. Its global network comprises over 6 million companies, chambers of commerce and business associations in more than 130 countries. More than 2,000 experts drawn from ICC’s member companies feed their knowledge and experience into crafting the ICC stance on specific business issues.

The United Nations, the World Trade Organization, the G20 and many other intergovernmental bodies, both international and regional, are kept in touch with the views of international business through ICC. Founded in 1919, National Committees like Nigeria are linked with the ICC Headquarters in Paris. ICC Nigeria became a member of the world body in 1979 and was reorganized in 1999, sequel to the realization of the benefits, which the business community could derive. In line with the foregoing, the ICCN Secretary General also urged all members to attend promptly and maximize the high network that the programme provides.

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