he Companies and Intellectual Property Authority (CIPA) is mandated to register businesses and protect intellectual property rights through the administration of four (4) pieces of legislation namely;
The Companies Act (CAP 42:01), which provides for the incorporation of companies; registration of post incorporation returns and notices; monitoring of post incorporation returns and reservation of company names.
Registration of Business Names Act (CAP 42:05), which provides for registration of business names and post registration notices such as change of ownership and cessation of businesses.
Copyright and Neighbouring Rights Act, (CAP.68:02) which provides for the protection of the rights of authors, artists and creators, as well as protection of their literary and artistic creations, which are generally referred to as “works”. These works include novels, poems, plays, films, musical works, and artistic works such as drawings, paintings, photographs and sculptures.
Industrial Property Act, (CAP.68:03) which provides for the protection of industrial property rights in relation to patents, trademarks, utility model certificates, industrial designs, traditional knowledge, layout designs of integrated circuits, geographical indications and handicrafts.
The Authority is headed by the Registrar General who oversees the operations of all divisions of the Authority and ensures that it achieves the mandate for which it was set up.
Botswana is represented by CIPA at the World Intellectual Property Organisation (WIPO), African Regional Intellectual Property Organisation (ARIPO), as well as the Corporate Registers Forum.
Formerly the Registrar of Companies and Intellectual Property (ROCIP), The Companies and Intellectual Property Authority (CIPA) was established by an Act of Parliament in 2011 (Companies and Intellectual Property Authority Act, (Cap. 42:13) to promote and enable full protection of the rights of investors and right holders obtained under the Companies Act, Registration of Business Names Act, Industrial Property Act and Copyright and Neighbouring Rights Act.
CIPA is now a Parastatal Body with Government under the parent Ministry of Trade and Industry.