‘In as much as some people might hold the view that copyright is the least important of intellectual property assets [sic], creative industries are at the heart of our economies’ – Tariro Anifasi, ARIPO.
During the 25th Administrative Council Session held in Accra, Ghana in November 2001 the Republic of Malawi made a proposal to extend the mandate of African Regional Intellectual Property Organization (ARIPO) to include Copyright and Related Rights to enable ARIPO coordinate copyright and related rights at regional level. ARIPO has since taken steps to implement the mandate through policy development, capacity building and advocacy. The latest effort by ARIPO was in June 2017 when it co-organised and hosted a symposium on copyright and related rights with the theme “Shaping the Copyright and Related Rights System in Africa”. The symposium brought together copyright offices, collective management organizations (CMOs) in ARIPO Member States and entrepreneurs together to discuss topical issues facing copyright and related rights administration and the role of ARIPO in shaping the copyright system.