CIPRO to become a commission

Intellectual registration office undergoes change in structure

September 16, 2009

Intellectual registration office undergoes change in structure

The Companies and Intellectual Property Registration Office (CIPRO) is in the process of merging with the Office of Companies and Intellectual Property Enforcement (OCIPE) to become a Commission. The new Commission will be known as the Companies and Intellectual Property Commission.

Mr Keith W Sendwe, CEO of CIPRO, explains that the decision to transform CIPRO into a Commission was made five years ago as part of the broad Department of Travel and Industry, (the dti) corporate law reform which involved the development of a new Companies Act.

In a global environment where the stimulation of economic growth is of critical importance, it was deemed necessary to combine forces with other organisations complimenting CIPRO’s service offering and place registration and enforcement of companies and intellectual property rights under one roof.

“CIPRO and OCIPE will accordingly merge to form the new Companies and Intellectual Property Commission,” says Sendwe.

“After transformation, the Companies and Intellectual Property Commission will operate under a new law with significantly expanded functions and powers. In particular, all administrative functions will now be de-politicised and placed within the jurisdiction of the Commission. Previously, all the administrative functions were assigned to the Minister of the dti. The appointment of members within the institutions and the drafting of regulations will however still be handled by the Minister.”

The only major change is that no new Close Corporations (CCs) will be registered after the Act becomes enforceable. However, all CCs currently listed on the Close Corporations Register prior to the implementation date of the Act will be maintained.