National Intellectual Property Policy
- To ensure that the rights of different ethnic cultural groupings and creators of cultural content are respected
- To promote and facilitate the effective creation, protection, management and use of IP as a strategic tool for economic social, cultural and technological development.
- To create linkages between the economic objectives development priorities and resources.
- To assist practitioners acquire appropriate knowledge and skills in the management of intellectual property systems.
- Promote a culture that values, respects and protects the results of creative thought, innovation and invention.
The Policy recognizes the implication and place of the IP to the Zimbabwe Agenda for Socio Economic Transformation ( ZIMASSET). It points out that “innovation and creativity are central to economic growth and development and that IP has become a significant factor in both creating and using ideas that are translated into knowledge and inventions to promote innovation and economic growth”. The draft policy recognizes the key role of IP in driving economic development. Attached to the draft policy is a report on needs evaluation development oriented IP plan for Zimbabwe. The report gives a background to IP development strategy and needs evaluation. The Action Plan for implementing the national IP policy has six goals:
- Facilitation of the use of IP for economic development
- Facilitation of the use of IP for science, technology and innovation
- Facilitation for the use of IP in other sectors
- Facilitation for the use of IP rights for growth and competitiveness of SMEs
- Facilitation of the use of IP rights in social development
- Facilitation for the use of IP for cultural development
A Government Committee on intellectual property was set up in 2012. In December 2014 a draft Intellectual policy was produced by the inter-ministerial committee on intellectual property and was distributed to stake holders in arts and culture and in particular organisations of creators and rights holders. This draft policy reviewed and validated at a meeting held in December in Harare with the participation of a representative of World Intellectual Property Organisation (WIPO) and African Regional Intellectual Property Organisation.
The Policy read in tandem with the Copyright and Neighbouring Rights Act seeks to promote artistic work. According to the Act, artistic work means “a graphic work, photograph, sculpture or collage, irrespective of its artistic quality or an architectural work or a work of artistic craftsmanship”. The Policy empowers collecting societies like ZIMURA and ZIMCOPY to:
- Act for owners of copyright in the management of their rights
- Represent owners of copyright in the negotiation and administration of licence schemes
- Negotiate or grant licences either as owners or prospective owners of copyright.
The Policy, thus, seeks to promote the right of producers of cultural goods thereby safeguarding their livelihoods. Zimbabwean artists are being hard hit by the piracy scourge, thus, the Policy seeks, among other things to counter the effects of piracy. The Policy is expected to protect artists from the exploitation of their works and the violation of their rights
It is difficult to determine