The Companies and Intellectual Property Authority (CIPA) announces that Botswana will host the 47th Session of the Administrative Council and 19th Session of the Council of Ministers of the African Regional Intellectual Property Organization (ARIPO) at Hotel 430 in Gaborone, Botswana. The Administrative Council, comprising heads of Intellectual Property offices of ARIPO Member States, will convene from 20th to 23rd November 2023. The Administrative Council will be followed by the Council of Ministers from 24th to 25th November 2023, which is the highest decision-making organ of ARIPO and comprises Ministers responsible for Intellectual Property in the twenty-two (22) Member-States of ARIPO. Botswana will be announced as the new Chair of the Organization’s governing bodies at both sessions, taking over from the Republic of Zimbabwe.

His Excellency the President, Dr Mokgweetsi Eric Keabetswe Masisi will deliver the keynote address at the opening of the 19th Session of the Council of Ministers on the 24th November 2023. The President of Botswana is a keen advocate for the utilization of IP for development and is expected to address the Ministers on promoting the use and protection of IP in their respective countries, so that Africa, through ARIPO continues to strive to use IP for economic growth and development.   

 “As we prepare to host the governing bodies of the African Regional Intellectual Property Organization, we are also greatly honoured that we will be ascending to the Chairmanship of the Organization. Hosting this prestigious event aligns perfectly with our pursuit to transform our economy into a knowledge-based economy underpinned by innovation, creativity and fit-for-purpose intellectual property laws,” said the Minister of Trade and Industry, Honourable Mmusi Kgafela. 

CIPA Caretaker Registrar General, Mr. Joel Duke Ramaphoi, recently met with the ARIPO Director General, Mr. Bemanya Twebaze, at the ARIPO Secretariat in Harare, Zimbabwe, to familiarize himself with ARIPO operations and discuss preparations for the Governing Bodies sessions. His visit to ARIPO demonstrates CIPA’s commitment to ensure the event is successful and a great opportunity to advance IP in Botswana and other member states. The event will bring together twenty-two (22) Ministers, twenty-two (22) Heads of Intellectual Property Offices, Senior Government Officials, Intellectual Property agents and industry experts from ARIPO Member and Observer States as well as other international organizations. Over one hundred international visitors are expected for the weeklong event, whose objective is to review the operations of the Secretariat and deliberate on strategic and policy matters that affect the advancement of Intellectual Property in the African region.