Director General Visits Egypt; Meets with the President and Other Officials, Participates in the Launching of Egypt’s First National Intellectual Property Strategy
September 22, 2022
WIPO Director General Daren Tang pledged in a meeting with President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi that WIPO would support the implementation of Egypt’s new intellectual property (IP) strategy and the attainment of Egypt Development Vision 2030.
During a September 19-22, 2022 official visit Mr. Tang also met Egypt’s Prime Minister and other senior government officials, in addition to participating in the official launching ceremony of Egypt’s First National Intellectual Property Strategy (NIPS).
During his Sept. 22 meeting with the President, Mr. Tang noted Egypt’s Vision 2030, aimed at its economic and social transformation and congratulated the President on the launch of Egypt’s first IP strategy. He underlined the important role that IP can play in the realization of Egypt’s objectives, acting as an engine for growth, catalyst for jobs and a key feature of the knowledge based economy. Mr. Tang added that WIPO will work closely with all national stakeholders - including researchers, scientists small and medium-sized enterprises (SME), start-ups, youth and women - to promote the culture of innovation.
The Director General pledged WIPO’s support for the implementation of Egypt’s National IP Strategy, which he said illustrates Egypt’s firm commitment to driving economic development using innovation, entrepreneurship and technology and achieving Egypt’s Development Vision 2030.
Launching of Egypt’s National IP Strategy
On September 21, Mr. Tang participated in the official launching ceremony of Egypt’s National IP Strategy, organized under the auspices of President El-Sisi, and inaugurated in the presence of Prime Minister Mostafa Madbouly.
More than ten Egyptian government ministers attended the launch ceremony alongside ambassadors, representatives of UN bodies and international organizations, members of national institutions mandated with administering IP in Egypt and key national figures working in the fields of education, entrepreneurship, technology and the creative economy.
Dr. Mohamed Ayman Ashour, Minister of Higher Education and Scientific Research, Counselor Omar Marwan, Minister of Justice and Dr. Ali El Moselhy, Minister of Supply and Internal Trade, each made opening addresses, which were followed by a panel discussion and closing speeches by Mr. Tang and Prime Minister Mostafa Madbouly.
In his address, Mr. Tang recalled the ancient spirit of Egyptian innovation and dynamism, and shared that it continues to this day with the country preparing for a new chapter of growth under the umbrella of Egypt’s Development Vision 2030. He further added that this vision of using innovation, entrepreneurship and technology to create a knowledge based economy and sustainable growth is very much aligned with WIPO’s desire to transform IP from a technical issue into a powerful catalyst for jobs, investments, business growth and, ultimately, economic and social development.
IP for Universities and Academic Research Institutions
Mr. Tang also met with Dr. Mohamed Ayman Ashour, Minister of Higher Education and Scientific Research at Cairo University. A “VIP Dialogue” followed that touched on IP rights, with a special focus on the role of IP in serving universities’ social goals, financial stability, technology transfer and commercialization.
In addition to the participation of Dr. Maya Morsy, President of Egypt’s National Council for Women, Presidents of 20 Egyptian universities joined in the event, as well as several parliamentarians, deputy ministers and CEOs of funding organizations. Leading officials representing Egypt’s IP bodies - Egyptian Patent Office (EgPO), Trademarks and Industrial Designs Office (Internal Trade Development Authority (ITDA), Copyrights, Plant Varieties, and software protection office (ITIDA) - were also present. During the dialogue, Mr. Tang pledged WIPO’s support for Egypt’s academic research institutions and research centers working to ensure that innovative and creative ideas are properly commercialized in the market and bring economic benefit to young researchers.
IP and the Judiciary: Enhancing the IP knowledge and skills of Egyptian Judiciaries in administering and adjudicating IP disputes
On the margins of the visit, Mr. Tang met with Counselor Omar Marwan, Minister of Justice. Ongoing cooperation between WIPO and the Ministry of Justice predate the meeting, with consultations regarding the conclusion and signature of two agreements already underway. One relates to WIPO LEX Judgements and the other pertains to Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR), both of which were signed on September 19, 2022.
In addition to the bilateral meeting and the signature ceremony of the memorandum of understanding, Mr. Tang and Counselor Marwan participated in the certificate award ceremony for a WIPO Academy course supporting judges. In honor of the occasion, Mr. Tang and Counselor Marwan delivered welcome speeches, followed by a certificate award ceremony for the top-10 performing judges with the highest score in the course.
Advancing the use of IP by Entrepreneurs: Innovation Hubs and Women Entrepreneurship in Egypt
On September 20, Mr. Tang met founders of some of Egypt’s leading start-ups at Creativa - one of Egypt’s leading innovation hubs, established with a view of developing the knowledge economy and promoting the commercialization of IP assets.
The majority of participants affirmed that IP and data are now their biggest asset, given that IP protection establishes credibility for investors and is an indispensable prerequisite for start-ups wishing to scale up their business and expand to other countries. Mr. Tang pledged WIPO’s support to Egypt’s innovators, noting that the recently launched National IP Strategy aligns with WIPO’s vision of IP as a horizontal catalyst for jobs, investment, business growth and, ultimately, economic transformation.
Mr. Tang also met with Dr. Maya Morsy, President of the Egyptian National Council for Women (NCW), in order to identify how WIPO can better support Egyptian female innovators, creators and entrepreneurs to leverage the use of IP to their advantage and contribute to the realization of the goals of Egypt’s National IP Strategy.
Cooperation between WIPO and NCW predate the meeting, which culminated with the launching of the IP and Women Entrepreneurship Project in Egypt, on the margins of the Director General’s visit to Egypt. The Director General was pleased to note that the NCW had established a new Committee on IP and Women within its structure, to underline the critical role of Egyptian women innovators and creators in implementing Egypt’s National IP Strategy as active participants in Egypt’s IP ecosystem.