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Transcript of PACRA 2013-06-26¢  PACRA is an executive Agency of the Ministry of Commerce, Trade and...

  • PACRA

    THE PATENTS AND COMPANIES REGISTRATION AGENCY

    (PACRA)

    A N N U A L R E P O R T

    2 0 1 2

  • PACRA ANNUAL REPORT 20122

    PATENTS AND COMPANY REGISTRATION AGENCY ANNUAL REPORT 2012

    Table of Contents Page

    ACRONYMS 4

    Foreword by the Board of Directors 5

    Overview by the Chief Exceutive Offi cer 7

    1 The Organisation 9

    1.1 Our Values 9

    1.2 Our Vision 9

    1.3 Our Mission 9

    1.4 Functions Of The Agency 9

    2 Board Members 10

    3 Commercial Activities 12

    3.1 Functions 12

    3.2 Activities 12

    3.3 Amnesty on Annual Returns 12

    3.4 Partnerships with Local Authorities 12

    3.5 Companies and Insolvence Bills 12

    3.6 Mobile Registration and Awareness Activities 13

    3.7 International Fairs 13

    3.8 Meeting with New Zealand Company Registry – Sa 14

    3.9 Meetings with Business Community – Turkey 14

    3.10 Study Tour – New Zealand and Kenya Company Registries 14

    3.11 Statistics – 2011 Vs 2012 14

    4 Industrial Property Activities 16

    4.1 Functions 16

    4.2 Activities 16

    4.3 Training Programmes on Reception of Trademark Applications 16

    4.4 Awareness Programmes on Intellectual Property 16

  • 3PACRA ANNUAL REPORT 2012

    ANNUAL REPORT 2012 PATENTS AND COMPANY REGISTRATION AGENCY

    4.5 World Intellectual Property Day 16

    4.6 Opposition Hearing 17

    4.7 Participation in the Zambia International Trade Fair 17

    4.8 ARIPO Administrative Council Meeting 17

    4.9 WIPO General Assemblies And Committee Meetings 17

    4.10 Engagement with WIPO on Creation of Technology & Innovation

    Support Centre. 18

    4.11 Technology Transfer Project 18

    4.12 Capacity Building in Intellectual Property 18

    4.13 First Aid Training 20

    4.14 Collaboration on Enforcement of IP Rights 20

    4.15 Annual Statistics for 2012 as at December, 2012 20

    Picture Focus 22

    5 Information Technology Activities 24

    5.1 Online Names Availability Search 24

    5.2 ePACRA upgrade 24

    5.3 Uploading of Trademarks into ePACRA Reserved Names 25

    5.4 Creation of Pacra Facebook Account 25

    5.5 Creation of Twitter Account 25

    6 Human Resources Activities 26

    6.1 Introduction 26

    6.2 Review of the Organisational Structure 26

    6.3 Customer Service Training 26

    7 Finance and Accounts 27

  • PACRA ANNUAL REPORT 20124

    PATENTS AND COMPANY REGISTRATION AGENCY ANNUAL REPORT 2012

    ACRONYMS

    ARIPO - African Regional Intellectual Property Organization

    BOARD - The Board of the Patents and Companies Registration Agency

    CEEC - Citizens Economic Empowerment Commission

    CIFIT - China International Fair for Investment Trade

    DPP - Director of Public Prosecutions

    ICT - Information Communication Technology

    IFC - International Finance Company

    IP - Industrial Property or Intellectual Property

    IPAS - Industrial Property Automation System

    IPRs - Intellectual Property Rights

    IT - Information Technology

    MCTI - Ministry of Commerce, Trade & Industry

    ONCS - Online Name Clearance System

    OSS - One Stop Shop

    PACRA - Patents and Companies Registration Agency

    PCT - Patent Cooperation Treaty

    PSDRP - Private Sector Development Reform Programme

    R & D - Research & Development

    SMEs - Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises

    TISC - Technology and Innovation Support Centres

    TRIPS - Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights

    WIPO - World Intellectual Property Organisation

    ZACCI - Zambia Association of Chambers of Commerce and Industry

  • 5PACRA ANNUAL REPORT 2012

    ANNUAL REPORT 2012 PATENTS AND COMPANY REGISTRATION AGENCY

    Mr. W.B. Nyirenda S.C., Board Chairman, PACRA.

    It has been two years since the Patents and Companies Registration Agency (PACRA) Board was appointed by the Minister of Commerce, Trade and Industry and various remarkable milestones have been achieved. The Board set out to defi ne the strategic vision of the Agency and the values considered critical to attaining the strategic vision as stipulated in the Strategic Plan covering for the period 2011 to 2015 which the Board and management developed. Our vision, encapsulated in the in the Strategic Plan, is to be a beacon of excellence in company and industrial property registration and protection. In other words, we intend to be second to none in business registration. We want to be the epitome of excellence.

    The Board in 2012 was able to provide direction on a number of issues that had been of great concern to the Agency such as the low levels of compliance with the laws governing the business community. In particular, the Board was concerned with the low levels of Annual Return fi ling. Annual Returns are a statutory requirement and are important because they show the position of the company as at the date of the return. In August this year, over 725 companies in Lusaka alone faced deregistration due to fact that they had not been compliant with fi ling their annual returns.

    It was therefore decided that a general Amnesty on Annual Return penalties to all defaulting businesses regardless of the number of years of default be granted. The Amnesty was for a period starting 31st of October to 31st December 2013 though it was extended to 31st January 2013. During this period more than 15,000 businesses came forward and fi led their Annual returns without penalties.

    BOARD CHAIRMAN’S FOREWORD

  • PACRA ANNUAL REPORT 20126

    PATENTS AND COMPANY REGISTRATION AGENCY ANNUAL REPORT 2012

    Another milestone was the review of the Companies Act which we are hopeful will be tabled before parliament next year. The Agency held various stakeholder consultative workshops in order to get views from key stakeholders. As a Board, we are delighted that the lacunas and grey areas existing in the current law will be cleared.

    I am also thrilled to relate that the fees for the registration of Intellectual Property (IP) rights at PACRA which were last reviewed in 1995 have fi nally been revised. The lack of review meant that for the past 17 years the fees have not been reviewed while the administrative costs involved in processing IP applications have gone up. Further, under the Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property (TRIPS) Agreement, it is a requirement under the National Treatment Clause that there should be no discrimination in the amount of fees paid by local and foreign applicants. To achieve this, and to be able to meet the rising administrative costs, PACRA in liaison with the Ministry of Commerce Trade and Industry, embarked on the revision of these Fees in 2012.

    After all necessary consultations with relevant stakeholders, the Statutory Instruments for the revision of Tariffs of Fees were produced and signed by the Honourable Minister of Commerce Trade and Industry on 17th December 2012 and gazetted on 21st December 2012. This means that with effect from 21st December 2012, the new Tariffs of Fees applied for all payments pertaining to IP protection

    Lastly the Board in consultation with management developed an ambitious decentralization and modernization programme. In particular, in a quest to bring registration services closer to the public and thereby reduce the cost of registration and compliance, the Agency has entered into partnerships with about 27 local authorities and opened additional regional offi ces to coordinate and supervise the local authorities. The Agency currently has offi ces in 8 provinces and will in 2013 have physical presence in Luapula and Central Provinces.

    Lastly, I wish to commend my fellow members of the Board and Management for their commitment and hard work in ensuring that the core values that PACRA has laid down do not remain mere aspirations but evident in our daily dealings.

    William. B. Nyirenda, S.C. Board Chairman

  • 7PACRA ANNUAL REPORT 2012

    ANNUAL REPORT 2012 PATENTS AND COMPANY REGISTRATION AGENCY

    The year 2012 was a very exciting one for us at the Patents and Companies Registration Agency (PACRA). It is therefore a great pleasure for me to share with you our stakeholders an overview of some of the key activities undertaken or commenced during the year.

    1. ONLINE NAME CLEARANCE SYSTEM (ONCs)

    Among the achievements of the Agency for 2012 was the creation of the Online Name Clearance (ONCs) system. The Online Name Clearance system is an e-fi ling system that enables our clients to obtain approval of proposed business and company names electronically. The initiative having being launched on 13th April, 2012 processed over 8,000 applications by December 2012.

    2. CLIENT SERVICE CHARTER

    In line with our commitment to provide optimal service delivery, we launched a client service charter in April 2012. The Charter contains commitments on service delivery and therefore constitutes a social contract betw