By Athaliah Reynolds-Baker
KINGSTON, Jamaica (JIS) -- The government of Jamaica is taking steps to protect reggae and all other aspects of the country’s national heritage through available intellectual property strategies and mechanisms, said Minister of Industry, Investment and Commerce, Anthony Hylton.
He was speaking last Thursday at the launch of the Jamaica Intellectual Property Office’s, 'e-JIPO' digitisation programme, held at the Jamaica Promotions Corporation’s (JAMPRO) headquarters in New Kingston.
Hylton informed that the Trade Marks Registry has been receiving several applications for the registration of trademarks, which include the word “reggae”. As such, he said, it is critical that all is done to legally protect Brand Jamaica and all things associated.
"Globally, the Jamaican brand is extremely strong, and, especially in this jubilee year, everybody wants to have products and services bearing the Jamaica brand,” he said.
He noted further that, with the London 2012 Olympics just a few weeks away, “the eyes of the world are on Jamaica."
"We are loved and even revered for our sun, sand, sea, food, music, culture, academic achievements and the prowess of our athletes,” he remarked.
Hylton said that Jamaica has been at the forefront of the lobby effort to have international intellectual property law protect the rights of countries to own and control the use of their country name.
“This is crucial to Jamaica being able to harness and build upon Brand Jamaica and all that is comprised therein,” he stated.
He argued that, as the global environment changes, “so too must we alter our modus operandi, in order to keep apace of the environment and carve out our place in the global value chain”.