Ghana IP Advocacy and Outreach Program: Say No To Fake Goods, Insist on the Original

October 28, 2010 - December 3, 2010

In February 2009, CLDP brought together IP and enforcement officials from across West Africa (under the auspices of the Economic Community of West African States [ECOWAS] to Ghana, to determine ways to improve IP protection in West Africa. Two key recommendations of the workshop were:

  • To develop a National Interagency Task Force on IP Matters comprised of all the agencies involved with IP protection in Ghana along with industry associations.

  • To initiate IP public outreach and advocacy programs including training and workshops to improve: recognition and protection of Ghanaian brands; and the public perception of the negative health and economic consequences of purchasing counterfeit and pirated goods.

An integral part of this interagency initiative is the business group Coalition Against Counterfeit and Illicit Trade (CACIT). CLDP has been working with CACIT and other members of the nascent IP interagency initiative to develop and implement an outreach and advocacy program with the twin goals of improving recognition and protection of the brands of Ghanaian clients, thereby increasing the value of their products; and improving the public perception of the negative health and economic consequences of purchasing counterfeit and pirated goods.  

With CLDP assistance, CACIT and other Ghanaian government Task Force members have undertaken a wide ranging multi-month public outreach program utilizing television and radio ads, public service announcements, dramas, and a series of anti-counterfeiting/piracy essay and song writing contests in schools. Moreover, one-day IP awareness training workshops took place in Takoradi on October 28th, in Kumasi on November 11th and in Accra on November 25th.Public feedback on these outreach measures has been overwhelmingly positive.  

One measure of success following the outreach efforts has been the marked interest and commitment of high school students on the subject, some of whom have decided to form IP clubs to increase awareness of the importance of IP. Likewise, CACIT has tentatively agreed with the Ghana Education Service to prepare and present a proposal to include IP in future curricula of secondary schools and to organize annual IP outreach programs in schools in the coming years. The final event of the campaign, an anti-counterfeiting/piracy essay and song writing contest, followed by a performance of music, drama and poetry on the subject, took place on December 3rd in Accra.

Upcoming Programs

August 1, 2020 - April 30, 2021

Throughout the quarter, CLDP engaged with numerous experts to prepare and record eight separate sessions on trade topics, specifically designed for Afghanistan’s approximately 25 Commercial Attachés posted throughout the world. In May 2018, CLDP spent one week training the same group of Attachés in a comprehensive course designed for them prior to their departure. This updated training course is intended to provide more advanced training on relevant topics now that the Attachés have been serving in their posts for more than two years.  The topics for these presentations were identified based on consultations with the Attachés and relevant stakeholders in the last quarter. Topics include drafting international contracts, attracting foreign direct investment, negotiation strategies, and two sessions on working trade shows. The series of pre-recorded virtual presentations, including translated copies of the presentations, will be delivered on a rolling basis to the Attachés. In addition, future topics will be recorded and shared with the participants. These virtual recordings will be saved in an online repository, which will be available for any interested party to view, including the private sector. 

March 15, 2021 - May 24, 2021

CLDP in close collaboration with the US Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) trained Bahrain Innovation and Technology Center (BITC) staff regarding filing patents in the GCC (Gulf Cooperation Council).  This program was part of a CLDP/USPTO collaboration to conduct over 40 hours of intellectual property training for the BITC.  The program included training on how to obtain patents and copyrights in the US as well as other jurisdictions.  

CLDP in Action

February 24, 2021 - February 25, 2021

On February 24-25, CLDP conducted a workshop on FIDIC contracts for a delegation of Sri Lankan officials from the Attorney General’s office.

Read More about Sri Lanka: FIDIC Contracts Workshop