The ARIPO Director General, Mr Fernando dos Santos, is attending the 57th Session of the Administrative Council of the Organisation Africaine de la Propriété Intellectuelle [African Intellectual Property Organization] (OAPI), being held in Niamey, Niger that started today, 11 December, 2017.
While giving his opening remarks at the Session, Mr Dos Santos alluded to the permanent status given to OAPI and ARIPO at the WTO TRIPS Council that was held on 19-20 October 2017. He said that the status was a good opportunity for the two Organizations to combine their efforts and speak with one voice in discussions on Intellectual Property topics of interest to Africa. This was also a recommendation by the ARIPO Administrative Council at its 41st Session held in Lilongwe, Malawi, from, November 20 to 22, 2017.
Mr Dos Santos also congratulated the OAPI Director General, Dr. Denis Loukou Bohoussou, on his appointment this year and for his commitment to strengthen the already existing Cooperation between OAPI and ARIPO.
In February this year, the two organizations signed a four year Cooperation Agreement. This Agreement, envisaged to take the relationship of the two organizations to new heights, abrogated two earlier agreements signed by the two organizations in 1996 and 2005 respectively.
The new Agreement established a comprehensive cooperation framework in intellectual property matters for the two parties. The two agreed to work towards; the harmonization of their systems, exchange of documentation and technical information and to mutually cooperate in the development of training and joint capacity building programs including in user awareness.