WASHINGTON – The Department of Commerce’s United States Patent and Trademark Office and the African Regional Intellectual Property Organization will work on joint intellectual property issues. Under Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property David Kappos and Director General of ARIPO Dr. Gift Huggins Sibanda signed an agreement to work together while in Geneva at the United States Mission to the United Nations on September 24.
“We look forward to working with our new partner to strengthen cooperative efforts and promote innovation,” noted Under Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property David Kappos.
The effort will strengthen the bilateral relationship between ARIPO and USPTO; improve the administration of intellectual property protection systems; increase public awareness about the importance of intellectual property issues; and develop professional skills through information sharing and capacity building. ARIPO, an intergovernmental organization comprised of 16 African countries, operates as a central intellectual property filing system.