The Permanent Secretary in the Federal Ministry of Industry, Trade and Investment, Dauda Kigbu has pointed out that the installation of industrial property automated system is directed at improving integrity in the process of registering trade mark, patent and design rights in Nigeria.
Dauda Kigbu accompanied by the Project Manager of the World Intellectual Property Organization IPO), Hisham Fayed stated this during the inspection activity on the office space meant for the Industrial Property Automated System (IPAS) at the Ministry’s Headquarters in Abuja.
The Permanent Secretary also noted that the industrial property automated system is a product of the integration of manual process into electronic system, saying the Ministry intends to shield the general public from staff to improve integrity in the process of registration of trade mark, patent and design in the country.
“It is about less interaction between the agents of the applicants with the staff doing the work. WIPO is deploying the technology and the ministry would provide the enabling environment for agents to drop their applications, leave and come back at their affordable time to collect the acknowledgment. So, there would be no interaction whatsoever with the people working in the office,” he explained.
According to him, that is what Government is trying to engage towards improving on the quality of the work which the ministry is doing as well as to ensure integrity of the system, transparency and revenue drive.
In his speech, the registrar of the Commercial Law Department of the Ministry, Salman Mann explained that industrial property registration would be done digitally from the stage of application submission to the point of registration to enhance the department’s work.
He described the automation system as a modern technology which would make transactions easier and faster for staff and applicants in line with international best practices as well as putting the registry on the same footing with other registries in the world. Adding, it will enhance derivation of revenue, block all leakages and ensure that no process is skipped in the course of registration.
She stated that the Ministry has commenced the process of establishing the Industrial Property Academy which will create necessary awareness on the knowledge required for the public to benefit and harness fully the potentials of industrial property in the country.
Salman Mann indicated that the ministry has received assistance and promises from WIPO, the United States Patent and Trade Mark Office (USPTO), the Chinese Government and Brazil, announcing that before the end of the first quarters of 2014, the Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment will formally launch the academy.
Speaking earlier, the Project Manager of WIPO, Hisham Fayed said that WIPO provided the automation system in collaboration with the Ministry to enable the deployment of IPAS to create positive image for the department and the nation as well as provide direct service delivery for customers and investors.
“It is a source of good image for the department and will enable them to streamline its applications, shield processes from abuse and provide better and secure environments to operate on,” he observed.
Hisham Fayed further said that Nigeria is number 14 out of the 52 African countries to deploy IPAS; adding that the scope of the system in Nigeria is larger than others in the continent. He explained that the initiative emanated from the recommendation of WIPO for the department to carry out more alignment and restructuring of its office, in order to maximize the utilisation of the automation system.
Federal Republic of Nigeria Press Release
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