Kenya Hosts 1st Intellectual Symposium on Intellectual Property Protection and Enforcement

Themed ‘Spurring digital – driven economies by addressing Intellectual Property crime curbing threat to global economies by the increased infringement of Intellectual Property Rights (IPR)’By: Thomas Ochieng 13/6/23 According to Figures by the World Economic Forum estimates that counterfeiting and illicit trade presently deprives the global economy of $2.2 trillion annually, this accounts for nearly three per cent of global gross domestic product (GDP).

It is on this background that the Anti-Counterfeit Authority of Kenya, the Attorney General Africa – Africa Programme and World Intellectual Property Organisation in the IP industry are hosting a unique a 3 day IP Enforcement symposium in Nairobi, Kenya.

Speaking during the opening ceremony Kenya’s Industry Permanent Secretary Dr. Juma Mukhwana who represented the Cabinet Secretary Hon. Moses Kuria stressed that the symposium will serve as a knowledge-sharing and networking platform, fostering discussions and collaborations to tackle the emerging issues of counterfeiting and IPR infringement. “This inaugural IP Conference will create an opportunity for stakeholders to exchange ideas, share best practices, and explore innovative strategies on how more effective international cooperation and collaboration” Said Dr. Mukhwana. The PS added that the conference can be developed to improve both strategic and operational responses to what is now a global economic and criminal issue.

The Chairmen of the Anti-Counterfeit Authority, Hon Josephat Kabeabea stated: “The latest Intellectual property crime study undertaken by ACA is the National Baseline Survey in October2019 and February 2020 on the extent of counterfeiting and other forms of illicit trade in Kenya showed the value of counterfeit trade to be close to Sh100 billion in revenue in 2018”.
On his part Mr John Edozie, Attorney General Alliance-Africa Programme (AGA- Africa) International Advisor and a key sponsor of the event said “Intellectual property in the 21st century is a critical driver of progress and prosperity as it fuels innovation, fosters creativity, and propels economic growth”. Mr. Edozie added that Whilst in the past, business investments primarily focused on physical assets, today, the true value lies in intangible goods—the ideas and creations of the mind that shape our world”.

The 3 day conference will get expert presentation from wide range of expertise notable presenters will be Director General of the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) Represented by Mr. Vermandele Xavier, the Attorney Generals’ Alliance (AGA-Africa) Gen. Hector Hugo Balderas, former AG, New Mexico and John Ukegbu, Esq, Senior Staff Attorney, New Jersey Office , Anti-Counterfeiting Network (ACN) -Uganda, Chairman & Director Legal & Corporate Affairs – Mr. Fred Muwem and Private Sector Representative, Flora Mutahi (Chair –KEPSA and Former Chairperson of the Anti-Counterfeit Authority), Kenya Association of Manufacturers CEO Antony Mwangi, President Law Society of Kenya, Mr. Eric Theuri, are just some of the names represented at the event.

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