Bridgetown- August 11th, 2021- The Canadian Government funded Improved Access to Justice in the Caribbean (IMPACT Justice) Project hosted a panel discussion to discuss its Model Business Names Registration Bill. The meeting was held on August 9th, 2021 and streamed live on UWI TV.
Professor Velma Newton, CBE, SCM, Regional Project Director of the IMPACT Justice Project, opened the discussion and highlighted that the IMPACT Justice Model Business Names Bill is one of two pieces of legislation drafted by the Project for the business community, the other being the Project’s Model Trade Marks Bill. She stated that these two pieces of legislation aim to harmonise the legislation in the region, which is necessary not only for the successful implementation of the CARICOM Single Market and Economy (CSME) but also to modernize business practices and make them more accessible to the public.
The panellists taking part in the discussion were Professor Eddy Ventose, Dean, Faculty of Law, The UWI, Cave Hill Campus; Mrs. Lekeicha Caesar-Toney, Registrar, Commerce and Intellectual Property Office, St. Vincent and the Grenadines; Ms. Gladys Young, Senior Legal Officer, CSME Unit; and Mrs. Rosalind Smith Millar, Partner, Clarke Gittens Farmer. Mr. Julian Rogers, Managing Director of the Jamaica Observer moderated the discussion.
In their respective presentations the panellists traced the development of the Bill and some of the deficiencies seen in existing legislation which the Bill seeks to address. The panellists also considered the challenges faced in regional registries under current legislation and looked at the provisions of the Bill which were critical to the CSME and to the modernization and digitization of regional registries.
Registrars from across the region along with small business associations were specially invited to view the proceedings along with the general public. Very soon, IMPACT Justice will have a follow-up meeting with its panellists and other interested stakeholders to further discuss the Bill and any amendments it may require.