Intellectual Property Strategy to be Implemented Soon

Image may contain: 2 people, people standing and suitPhoto courtesy Marc Bain: (l-r): Ms. Frances Signoret, Permanent Secretary (Ag.), Ministry of Trade and Industry; Mr. Dimiter Gantchev, Deputy Director, Copyright Infrastructure Division, Copyright and Creative Industries Sector, World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO), Geneva, Switzerland; and Ms. Ingrid Seerattan, Permanent Secretary, Ministry of the Attorney General and Legal Affairs.

Source: Trinidad & Tobago Newsday

Published on Friday, April 7th 2017

A draft intellectual property (IP) strategy and the establishment of an intellectual property academy are among activities the local Intellectual Property Office (IPO) is currently pursuing to safeguard national intellectual property rights.

This is according to Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of the Attorney General and Legal Affairs (AGLA), Ingrid Seerattan. 

Speaking yesterday at the opening of a two-day national workshop on “How to make a living from Music” at the Cascadia Hotel, St Ann’s Seerattan said, “It is no secret that the music and creative industry has tremendous potential to diversify the Trinidad and Tobago economy” for economic prosperity. 

The workshop attracted a large number of musicians among others. 

It was sponsored by the Ministry of the Attorney General and Legal Affairs, the World Intellectual Property Organisation (WIPO) and Trinidad and Tobago Music Company. 

The number of local, regional and international resource personnel at the workshop included Dimeter Gantchev, Director, Copyright Infrastructure Division, WIPO, Switzerland; Dr Vanus James, Professor of the University of Technology, Jamaica; Simon Baptiste, manager/performer and Konata Alleyne, performer/musician/ director. 

A 2014 study conducted by economist Dr Vanus James for the IPO, Seerattan said, “found that the copyright industries and all the economic activity that hinges on economic rights alone contribute roughly under five percent to our GDP. 

This is a staggering statistic.” The IPO, she said, was a net generator of revenue having earned $18.7 million from 1995 to 2005 and $48.8 million in gross revenue from 2006 to 2015. 

Economic diversification through IP and its link to innovation are supported by existing and planned activities of the IPO, Seerattan said. 

Noting that the IPO has the task of promoting innovation in the society, she said, the AGLA signed a memorandum of understanding with the University of Trinidad and Tobago to cooperate in IP affairs.