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Protect your trademarks, firms advised

THE Patents and Companies Registration Agency (PACRA) has urged businesses to protect their trademarks from being used by others.
PACRA public relations officer Vaida Bunda said it is important to protect trademarks by registering them with the agency.
Ms Bunda said in an interview recently that the agency will also be embarking on a sensitisation campaign to educate the public on the importance of protecting their innovation.
“We have realised that there is a lot of innovation in schools and elsewhere and this work is not protected, thereby making it easy for anyone to use it,” she said.
Ms Bunda said the agency last year registered an increase in companies of a total of 16,640 from the l6, 200 in 2014.
Of the total figure registered last year, 56 are foreign-owned while the rest are locally-owned.
Ms Bunda said the agency has already registered 868 businesses this year and hopes to double the number of registrations owing to the introduction of the online system.
“We recently launched an online registration system and we expect to double the number of registrations because the system is now decentralised,” she said.
Ms Bunda said most of the businesses that are being registered this year are mostly interested in agriculture, forestry and fishing, mining and quarrying, and manufacturing.
On de-registration of businesses, she said over 1,000 firms failed to comply with the requirements of filing annual returns last year.
Ms Bunda said the agency has this year already struck off 85 companies for non-compliance, representing only seven were foreign with most of them being local.
“Last year, we de-registered 1,195 companies most of which were local companies. We are hopeful that companies will improve on their compliance so that we can reduce on the number of de-registration,” she said.