Pfizer, stakeholders urge govt to protect intellectual property rights



Pfizer pharmaceuticals and other stakeholders have urged the federal government to boost the nation’s economy by pursuing the protection of Intellectual Property Rights (IPRs) even as they said that financial improvement in rising markets like Nigeria stays unexplored or broadly misunderstood.

The stakeholders at the workshop tagged: ‘The Dynamic Role of Intellectual Property Protection in Promoting Innovation and Economic Development in Emerging Markets‘, last week, in Lagos, drew attention to the current Intellectual Bill that is passing through the National Assembly.

The sponsors of the Bill include Janssen Pharmaceutical Companies of Johnson and Johnson, ICC, Pfizer Incorporation, Private Sector Health Alliance of Nigeria, and Jackson, Etti and Edu. Partners include Leap Africa, Fate Foundation, Enterprise Creative and CoCreation Hub.

The stakeholders at the international intellectual property workshop organised by Anadach Group and Pfizer, which started with an intensive certified training session tagged “IP 101”, targeted at innovators and entrepreneurs.

The training workshop brainstormed on intellectual property protection where attendees learnt about “what to protect”, “how and where to protect it”, “what your protection covers and costs”, which was followed by a two day intellectual property workshop where experts addressed the intellectual property framework, practical examples of intellectual property supporting innovation, economic growth in emerging markets.

Chairman, International Chamber of Commerce (ICCN) and Chairman, Guinness Nigeria, Mr. Babatunde Savage, launched a report on intellectual property and innovation in Nigeria (IPIN) developed by the Business Action to Stop Counterfeiting and Piracy group (BASCAP).

The menace of counterfeiting in the pharmaceutical was also addressed on under the panel discussion titled “Pharmaceutical and biotechnology intellectual property: opportunities for success including leveraging traditional knowledge”.

Director Global Security, Pfizer, Dr. Pierre Souverain, spoke on the counterfeiting of drugs by bad elements, which have gone a long way in casting a bad name on the industry.

Other topics discussed were: “Information and communication Technology intellectual property: Trends and Opportunities, “ Creating unprecedented opportunities with visual arts, music, film and books”, where the panelist discussed on piracy and copyright.

Uwa Ohiku, a partner and head of the intellectual property department of Jackson, Etti & Edu, said IP ought to be dealt with on the coverage-making degree of presidency, particularly when commerce agreements are signed.

According to her, the federal government was culpable within the signing off the IP rights of Nigerians and corporations.

She stated: “The textile business is gone as a result of its IP was not protected. The Chinese got here and copied a few of designs, which originated from the nation, and made it theirs. Today, they promote low cost materials of our designs. This occurred as a result of no one is defending the nation’s IP.”

Ohiku referred to as for a assessment of legal guidelines on IP, including that the federal government have to be extra concerned. “When there isn’t a government understanding, the place can we stand? The coverage makers don’t even perceive it,” Ohiku stated.

South Africa, she added, was making a living from IP as a result of it knew its profit to the financial, including that folks haven’t been benefitting from conventional information, Traditional Knowledge (TK), as a result of they have been solely curious about innovations, however didn’t shield them.

“The TK, particularly on adire (tie and materials), which originated from Ogun State ought to be cash spinning,” she stated.

Director, Corporate Affairs, Health and Value, Pfizer Nigeria East Africa Region (NEAR), Margaret Olele stated her organisation’s involvement was borne out of the necessity to shield “what’s essential to the society”. It can also be a bid to assist battle counterfeiting.

“Also, we take a look at what impacts us within the surroundings and never simply within the pharmaceutical sector alone. We are usually not glad till our merchandise get to the sufferers, who’re the top customers,” she stated.

Olele stated Pfizer would proceed to associate with different corporations to make sure that the IP rights are protected.

Director, Regulatory Affairs, Pfizer Bunmi Femi-Oyekan stated: “The concern of infringement and counterfeiting is necessary to us. As an organization, we attempt to strengthen the safety of our merchandise. However, this isn’t simply achieved as a result of counterfeiters are excellent at what they do. Hence, we help the regulatory businesses.”

A co-organiser, Mr. Obafemi Agaba, stated superior nations took the problems of IP critically, including that South Africa has a practical IP coverage in place. This, he famous, has helped to make a few of its international manufacturers.

“President Barrack Obama appointed an IP adviser into the Office of President of United States as a result of he understood its significance to the financial system,” he stated.

He additionally needs a assessment of the Patent Act, which he stated was handed down by the colonial masters.

In a press release, the organiser, Anadach Group, stated: “This workshop will look at the present and potential contribution of IP protection in rising native

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