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Invest in innovation, creativity – Lungu

VICE-President Inonge Wina and Minister of Commerce, Trade and Industry Margaret Mwanakatwe arrive for the official opening of the 15th Africa Regional Intellectual Property Organisation Administrative Council and Ministerial Summit in Lusaka yesterday. PICTURE: COLLINS PHIRI

STEVEN MVULA, Lusaka
PRESIDENT Lungu has urged African countries to invest in innovation and creativity in order to spur development.
And President Lungu says Government will next year take to Parliament five bills aimed at strengthening the law on intellectual property systems.
President Lungu said advances in technology have taken the world into a new phase of globalisation.
“Africa is the next growth pole and to take advantage of the emerging challenges, Africa must position itself as the heart of innovation and creativity,” President Lungu said.
The President said this in Lusaka yesterday in a speech read for him by Vice-President Inonge Wina during the official opening of the 15th session of the council of ministers of the African Regional Intellectual Property Organisation (ARIPO).
President Lungu said any economic and social progress depends on new ideas and the ingenuity that challenge the status quo and bring about positive change and improvement.
“Today, innovation cannot be done away with because it is the key driver of economic development,” President Lungu said.
He said African countries must emulate developed countries, which consciously invest in their intellectual property systems to provide incentives and effective protection for those who develop new ideas.
“It is imperative that African governments develop and expand their scientific and technological infrastructure while cultivating a spirit of innovation in our people,” President Lungu said.
And President Lungu said Government will next year introduce bills aimed at consolidating the law with regard to traditional folklore, patents, trademarks, integrated circuits and industrial designs.
“At national level, we have taken various steps to strengthen our intellectual property systems. We are reviewing our legal framework through the introduction of bills to Parliament,” he said.
President Lungu said the laws will be an important step in Zambia’s efforts to domesticate various international agreements, the country has ratified so far.


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