Covid-19 brought many activities in the world to a standstill and had many negative effects on various business operations. Business registration was no exception because from April to June 2020, it dropped by 36%. According to the chief executive officer of the Business and Intellectual Property Authority (BIPA), Vivienne Katjiuongua, the pandemic definitely negatively impacted BIPA.
Katjiuongua said before the pandemic took effect, BIPA registered 50% more businesses during the first quarter compared to the second quarter: “During that period, we only registered 28 000 new entities, before that we were registering 44 000 entities in a quarter. Our numbers went down significantly.”
She explained that BIPA is mandated to register businesses and intellectual property rights and also to administer the two services. According to her, they also ensure that their work stimulate business activity in the country, through developing businesses and intellectual property.
Katjiuongua stressed that everywhere across the world, the registration of intellectual property rights has decreased significantly.
She outlined that the pandemic caught the authority at the stage when it was using manual registration, which hampered their overall operations because of the lockdown.
“Most processes are manual such as access to BIPA services and we couldn’t deliver services efficiently to remote areas. Electronic transmission mechanisms are still in the process,” she stated. She continued that BIPA is investigating automating all systems.
“The system has been rolled out for testing and is provided on a platform called integrated client services facility. It is a platform that is created in collaboration with the office of the prime minister and the Ministry of Industrialisation and Trade,” she said. - email@example.com