Despite another recessionary year, the Business and Intellectual Property Authority (BIPA) delivered a strong financial performance, declaring a surplus of N$17 million, doing particularly well in its efforts to collect outstanding annual duties. This was revealed in the authority’s 2019/2020 annual report tabled in parliament on Wednesday.
BIPA CEO Vivienne Katjiuongua said the financial position can be further strengthened in the next financial year: “With the registration of trademarks, copyrights and patents, revenues were further boosted. While business registration revenues recorded a modest increase, the authority’s investment initiatives received N$1.5 million in interests”.
Despite recording a cost increase of 11%, BIPA also saw a growth in net assets worth N$25 million, of which the highest growth was on investments. Going forward, the authority will focus on further strengthening its financial position, with prudent measures to contain costs and other expenditures.
Katjiuongua stated that over the 12 months period, the authority cumulatively approved 13 736 new business entities. Of the new applications received, 55% were registered within three days, compared to 52% in the 2018/19 financial year.
“This reflects a 3% improvement in turn-around-times for the registration of businesses within the targeted three days, attributable to the reengineered process. In further executing our core mandate, we received 2 313 trademark applications, of which 981 applications were submitted through the national filing route, whilst 240 applications were received through regional structures,” she explained.
To enhance BIPA processes, the CEO said the authority also focused on the development and finalisation of the Intellectual Property Policy. The policy is the legal framework required to promote and stimulate creativity, innovation and inventiveness in Namibia. To this end, BIPA, together with the trade ministry, launched the National Intellectual Property Policy and Strategy in October 2019.