BRIDGETOWN, Barbados – High ranking officials of the intellectual property offices of CARIFORUM States and the CARIFORUM directorate met with representatives of the European Commission and the European Union Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO), on January 27, 2020, in Bridgetown, Barbados, to solidify their cooperation in the field of intellectual property (IP) for the years to come. The main output of this project steering committee meeting will be the adoption of the work plans of the newly signed EU-CARIFORUM regional project in IP – CarIPI.
CarIPI is a CARIFORUM regional project funded by the European Development Fund (EDF) and implemented by EUIPO. With a total budget of $3.28 million Euros from the Caribbean regional indicative programme under the 11th EDF and a duration of four years, the project will support CARIFORUM member states in furthering the implementation of the Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA) signed with the European Union in 2008.
The director-general of the CARIFORUM directorate, Percival Marie clearly sees “the benefits that will accrue to CARIFORUM States as a result of the project and the contribution which it will make to realizing the benefits of the EPA.”
Ambassador to the EU Delegation to Barbados, the Eastern Caribbean States, the OECS, and CARICOM/CARIFORUM, Daniela Tramacere stated that “The project will lead to innovation and competitiveness in the regional private and public sectors, and help the region take full advantage of the economic partnership agreement with the EU.”
In a highly integrated and competitive global marketplace, CARIFORUM economies can find their niche by identifying and exploiting their distinctive capabilities, which are often based on knowledge, skills, and creativity. The region’s capacity to develop and market intangible assets needs to be empowered and an enabling intellectual property rights framework is essential in this process.
The project’s steering committee meeting was followed by a two-day workshop targeted at high-level officials of the intellectual property (IP) offices of CARIFORUM, to discuss items such as the global trends in trademarks industrial designs and geographical indications and the future of IT tools for IP offices and users.
Moreover, bringing together stakeholders from the CARIFORUM States and from the European Union, the workshop aimed to promote an interactive discussion to exchange views on CARIFORUM regional cooperation in IP, identifying challenges and future lines of action. During the coming years, the CarIPI project shall contribute to strengthening the Intellectual Property Rights environment in CARIFORUM as a means to foster trade and investment and stimulate innovation and competitiveness of the private sector.
Activities will be implemented across the CARIFORUM region and will involve CARIFORUM IP offices, IPR enforcement bodies, the private sector and other stakeholders.
“The EUIPO looks forward to contributing through this new project and in line with our strategic plan 2025, to a stronger IP system, efficient enforcement and better understanding of IP rights in a global and increasingly digital environment”, says the EUIPO’s executive director, Christian Archambeau.