Minutes - TRIPS Council - View details of the intervention/statement

H.E. Ambassador Dagfinn Sørli (Norway)
197.   This statement is being delivered in our national capacity. At the outset, let me thank the proponents for their submission in document IP/C/W/679. 198.   Jamaica has over the years recognized and continues to place a high premium on the level of importance given to intellectual property (IP). As a nation which possesses a cadre of talented individuals including artists, musicians, performers and innovators there has always been a deliberate effort to ensure that there is an awareness of the ramifications of the legal framework involved in IP such as trademarks and copyright. While IP is vital for all creators , it is becoming increasingly essential to the development of MSMEs. In Jamaica, it is estimated that MSMEs employ about 80% of the workforce. It is therefore critical that our MSMEs have a fundamental understanding of the advantages and the importance of greater IP protection to boost creativity, innovation and competitiveness. 199.   Allow me to briefly share efforts currently ongoing at national level aimed at supporting MSMEs in the area of IP. The Government of Jamaica through our local IP Office, is currently leading a project title "Strengthening the IP Ecosystem to Increase Innovation, Competitiveness and Growth in MSMEs in Jamaica" funded by the Inter- American Development Bank (IDB) and the Caribbean Development Bank (CDB). This project is geared towards strengthening the IP ecosystem in Jamaica so that MSMEs can leverage their IP assets and obtain financing. This will help to increase their competitiveness and foster innovation which will contribute to economic growth in Jamaica. The majority of Jamaica's MSMEs are in the micro-sector and they usually have challenges in obtaining financing as financial institutions or providers consider them to be risky borrowers and they are the ones least likely to access funding even when resources are available. This project is part of the overall efforts of the Government to improve the local business climate and increase support and access to finance for MSMEs. The ultimate aim of the project is to shift public and stakeholders' perception and awareness of the benefits of IP creation, valuation and monetization. 200.   My delegation wishes to commend the TRIPS Council for the discussion on "Making MSMEs Competitive through Intellectual Property (IP) and Innovation" held throughout the previous year and for the early parts of this year. Indeed, going forward priority must be given to MSMEs to ensure they are well equipped and well positioned to benefit from the intellectual property ecosystem.
51. The Chair recalled that this item had been put on the agenda at the request of Australia, Canada, Chile, The European Union, Japan, Switzerland, Chinese Taipei, the United Kingdom and the United States, and subsequently co-sponsored by the delegations of Brazil and Singapore. A communication had also been circulated in document IP/C/W/679.
52. The representatives of the United Kingdom; Switzerland; the United States; Australia; Singapore; Japan; Canada; Chinese Taipei; the European Union; Brazil; China; Côte d'Ivoire; the United Kingdom; and Jamaica took the floor.
53. The Council took note of the statements made.
IP/C/M/100, IP/C/M/100/Add.1