Magistrates from the seventeen member States of OAPI as well as those of the Kingdom of Morocco have ended a one week workshop in Yaounde.
Counterfeiting is a crime and has a negative impact on the economy of a country. Moreover, consumers suffer from security problems when it comes to counterfeiting of drugs and original parts of vehicles. It is the duty of the African Intellectual Property Organisation (dubbed OAPI in the French language) to protect consumers.
That is why last week in Casablanca, Morocco and Yaounde, Cameroon; a sub regional training workshop on the respect of intellectual property for magistrates of the Member States of the African Intellectual Property Organisation and the Kingdom of Morocco took place. The workshop took place under the auspices of the Ministry of Justice.
It was jointly organised by the World Organisation of Intellectual Property (OMPI), the National Institute of Industrial Property (INPI) of France, the Moroccan Office of Industrial and Commercial Property (OMPIC) and OAPI.
The workshop according to the Director General of the Moroccan Office of Industrial and Commercial Property (OMPIC), Adil El Maliki, aimed at sensitising magistrates of seventeen member states of OAPI as well as those of the Kingdom of Morocco on the negative impacts of counterfeiting which takes away jobs, and taxes as those involved do not pay taxes to the government.
He explained that during the week, participants had practical courses on how to deal with counterfeiting prosecution.
The President of the National Commission for the fight against Counterfeiting in France, Richard Yung, said it is important to curb counterfeiting especially in Africa which is an emerging continent that needs to encourage internal investors as well as attract external investors.
He noted that there is need to protect intellectual property of external investors so as to guarantee that their products are protected each time they come to invest in a country.
The Director General of OAPI, Denis Loukou Bohoussou said in a context of globalization of economies and liberalisation of international trade, counterfeiting is an issue that conditions economic development. Hence need for magistrates to be legally apt to handle matters linked to it.