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    Craft Trade and Protection: ITC and WIPO together in Cuba


    © International Trade Centre, International Trade Forum - Issue 1/2001 

    The first joint ITC/World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) Workshop on Legal Protection of Craft Items (Havana, February 2001) gathered 160 participants from 16 countries in Latin America and the Caribbean. They included artisans and representatives from intellectual property rights authorities, the craft sector and its trade support institutions. Besides the organizers, two international organizations were present: the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) and the World Crafts Council. The three-day sessions were chaired by the director of the Fundación Española para la Artesanía (Spanish crafts foundation).

    The event followed up the ITC/WIPO mission carried out in 2000 to Bolivia, Colombia and Peru, which analysed practical experiences on the actual and potential needs of artisan communities.

    Participants requested ITC and WIPO to pursue their joint efforts to create awareness and provide training on intellectual property rights linked to fair marketing practices. They are concerned by the poor image given by illegal, poorly executed copies of artisanal products, which lead to artisans' loss of earnings and are detrimental to the economic viability of the whole sector.

    In parallel, ITC and WIPO operated a joint stand for information and advisory purposes at the Havana International Craft Fair, FIART 2001, organized by the Fondo Cubano de Bienes Culturales (Cuban

    foundation for cultural assets) under the auspices of the Cuban Ministry of Culture.

    For more information, contact María-Mercedes Sala, ITC Market Development Officer, at sala@intracen.org, or Marie-Claude Frauenrath, ITC Associate Expert, at frauenrath@intracen.org