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Jamaica to adopt Madrid Protocol

Monday, September 25, 2017

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The Government says it is working to fast-track the process of adopting and implementing the international trademark registration system, the Madrid Protocol.

Minister of culture, gender, entertainment and sport, Olivia Grange, says to accomplish this, changes are being made to the relevant legislation.

“Amendments to the Trademark Act are being effected and, once complete, the Government will become signatory to the Madrid Protocol,” the minister said at a press conference at the Jamaica Conference Centre in downtown Kingston last week, following the conclusion of a regional conference on the 'Strategic use of Intellectual Property (IP) in Sport'.

Grange said that the Bill is now at the Office of the Chief Parliamentary Counsel, “and so we expect these amendments to be fast-tracked so that we can treat with the concerns we have”.

The Madrid Protocol facilitates international registration of trademarks by way of one application that is recognised worldwide.

Grange stressed that by becoming a signatory to the treaty, Jamaica could greatly assist athletes with the patenting of their goods, which is an expensive and complex procedure.

The opportunity of having a single registration covering a wide range of countries offers several advantages, both in terms of portfolio management and cost savings, as opposed to a portfolio of independent national registrations.

The Madrid Protocol is one of two treaties under what is described as the Madrid System for the International Registration of Marks; the other is the Madrid Agreement. Both treaties were adopted at diplomatic conferences in Madrid, Spain.

In the meantime, Minister Grange expressed satisfaction with the positive response to the conference and the level of participation.

“I am pleased to say that the conference was oversubscribed and we were able to host many individuals here from diverse backgrounds and interests. We expect that there will be real action coming out of this event, and my understanding is that persons have already made the initial contact with the Jamaica Intellectual Property Office (JIPO) and its representatives,” she said.

Some of the areas discussed included protection of copyright on the Internet; the sport marketing industry; the role of IP in sport tourism; building a successful brand; naming rights for sporting facilities and clubs; and drafting and negotiating good sponsorship agreements.

The two-day conference was staged in collaboration with the sport ministry, the World Intellectual Property Organization and JIPO.

— JIS

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