Government has launched the Zimbabwe National Intellectual Property Policy and Implementation Strategy (2018-2022) to spur innovation and creativity in various sectors of the economy.
Addressing stakeholders at a local hotel, Justice, Legal and Parliamentary Affairs minister Ziyambi Ziyambi said strong Intellectual Property protection legislation was essential for innovation and economic success.
The Intellectual Property (IP) refers to the distinct types of creations of the human mind with a direct bearing of the human intellect for which exclusive proprietary legal rights are recognized and conferred to a natural or legal person for a certain period of time, IP is generated through research and development for example technological innovations or inventions (patents) and creative activity like artistic works, music and others.
Intellectual property protection is an essential requirement for innovation, economic growth, technology transfer and foreign direct investment among other fundamentals, the protection of intellectual property ensures that the right holders have adequate protection and incentive to bring their work to the market without the fear of having ideas, products being stolen.
Sectors in the ZNPPIS includes Agriculture, health Sector, Industry, Small and Medium scale enterprises, educational, training and Professional Skills Development among others
However there is need to raise awareness as there are a lot of good products out there and yet are unmarked hence the risk of being everyone’s property hence the need to get products to be protected by taking it through the process of registration .
It is well noted that the Zimbabwean Laws are outdated and silent about ICT and yet a lot of infringement is happening online, prompting the ministry of Justice, Legal and Parliamentary Affairs to seek a review of these laws by engaging ARIPO and WIPO .
Roll out and implementation of the document is expected to start immediately with the help of the relevant institutions including universities, key stakeholders in private and public sector