Basseterre, St. Kitts, July 03, 2017 (SKNIS): A two-day workshop geared towards building capacities of law enforcement officials in St. Kitts and Nevis is currently taking place at the St. Kitts Marriott Resort under the theme “Enforcement of Intellectual Property Rights.”
The workshop, which runs from July 3-4, is organized by the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) in collaboration with the Intellectual Property Office (IPO) in Saint Kitts and Nevis.
The law enforcement officials include magistrates, police, customs officers, inspectors at Consumer Affairs and other public officers whose expertise may become necessary in arresting, prosecuting and adjudicating on cases on intellectual property infringement.
Attorney General, and Minister of Justice and Legal Affairs, the Honourable Vincent Byron, expressed the importance and timeliness of the workshop, as well as the importance of Intellectual Property in the federation.
“The Government of National Unity places great [emphasis] on Intellectual Property Rights, especially when it comes to our emerging young people,” said the Honourable Byron, as he expressed that the art, poetry and composition of songs created by the youth in the federation need to be protected in order for them to receive the commercial benefit that is due. “Having examined the agenda of the workshop, I am confident that at the end of these two days our law enforcement and other relevant government officials who interface with matters related to Intellectual Property will walk away with new knowledge, stronger capacities, and a widen awareness of their roles in protecting and enforcing Intellectual Property Rights.”
Attorney General Byron encouraged participants to be actively involved as their “efforts in this exercise falls squarely in the government’s overall role to elevate Intellectual Property as a viable of economic, social and cultural growth, especially in regard to youth entrepreneurship.”
Nicola St. Catherine, Assistant Registrar at Intellectual Property Office, used the forum to educate the audience on Intellectual Property Rights.
“Intellectual Property Rights is the right of an individual or group to own and benefit from the tangible and intangible creation of their own minds,” she said. “The Intellectual Property Office “plays a pivotal role not only in the economic diversification and wealth creation at a national level but also as a partner in the cooperative global effort to afford enforcement of Intellectual Property rights wherever and whenever possible.”
She added that the Intellectual Property office in St. Kitts was created to protect Intellectual Property rights holders in order for them to enjoy “exclusivity in the exploitation of their Intellectual Property.”
Ms. Louise van Greunen, lead facilitator of the workshop, conveyed her delight for being able to facilitate the event and help persons better understand the importance of Intellectual Property Rights.
“It is really a pleasure to be here this morning and it is a pleasure to have the opportunity to spend the next two days with you to look at the enforcement of Intellectual Property Rights in a balanced way,” said Ms. Van Greunen, as she explained that it is important for persons to know their rights. “We
should use Intellectual Property Rights for the development, both for the users, manufacturers and producers.”
St. Kitts and Nevis has taken part in various workshops and seminars organized by WIPO. WIPO also assisted the federation with the development and installation of the Industrial Property Automation System (IPAS) in September 2015.