Minister Ganoo chairs sensitisation session on Industrial Property Act 2019

Minister Ganoo chairs sensitisation session on Industrial Property Act 2019

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The Minister of Land Transport and Light Rail, Minister of Foreign Affairs, Regional Integration and International Trade, Mr Alan Ganoo, chaired, this afternoon in Port Louis, a sensitisation session for private sector institutions on the Industrial Property Act 2019. The aim of this session was to share with representatives of private institutions the main elements of the new industrial property framework of Mauritius.

Representatives of the Economic Development Board, the Mauritius Research and Innovation Council, as well as other institutions and associations from the private sector were present on this occasion.

In his opening remarks, Minister Ganoo highlighted that the Industrial Property Act, adopted in August 2019, extends protection to industrial property rights currently covered under existing laws, namely, patents, trademarks and industrial designs. He pointed out that the Act also protects new industrial property rights such as utility models, plant breeders’ rights, geographical indications and layout designs of integrated circuits.

The Minister stressed that this Act aims at modernising the industrial property framework. The Act, he underlined, covers new industrial property rights that will enable the Mauritian industrial property system to be more responsive to the needs of the country’s development path where research, development and innovation lie high on Government’s agenda.

Furthermore, Mr Ganoo observed that a salient feature of the law relates to the establishment of an empowered Industrial Property Office of Mauritius as well as an Intellectual Property Council so as to coordinate all matters relating to intellectual property at national level. He indicated that the Act also makes provision for Mauritius to join three Treaties administered by the World Intellectual Property Organisation (WIPO), as follows: The Patent Cooperation Treaty; The Madrid Protocol; and The Hague Agreement for the international registration of patents, trademarks and industrial designs.

On another note, Minister Ganoo underscored that Mauritius secured technical and financial assistance from the European Union (EU) so as to implement the main recommendations of the National Intellectual Property Development Plan, of which one of the main recommendations relates to the implementation of the new industrial property law.

He recalled that, in November 2021, a team of four intellectual property experts appointed by the EU was in Mauritius to build the capacity of local stakeholders, but unfortunately the training sessions had to be postponed due to the surge of COVID-19 cases in the country as well as the travel restrictions related to the pandemic. However, he emphasised, the experts’ mission will start over on 31 January 2022 until 04 March 2022.

Before concluding, the Foreign Affairs Minister stated that Mauritius has been selected as one of the six countries in Sub Saharan Africa to participate in the initial phase of the WIPO’s project entitled ‘Improvement of Intellectual Property and Innovation Ecosystems in Sub Saharan Africa’.

Distributed by APO Group on behalf of Republic of Mauritius.