IP in Guyana: the theory and the practice


Rafiq Khan

In Guyana, the Trade Marks Act and the Patents & Designs Act, together with the rules and regulations made under each of them, prescribe the rights and protections granted to proprietors of trademarks and patents, respectively.

Copyright is governed by parts of the UK Copyright Act 1956, which were extended to Guyana by the Copyright (British Guiana) Order 1966 No. 79 in February 1966, shortly before independence in May of that year. A new Copyright Act was drafted more than a decade ago (in 1999, then President Bharrat Jagdeo said that updated copyright laws were key to the country’s development and that he intended to have a draft bill, in circulation at the time, in place by the following year) but it is still not known when it will be enacted.

Guyana has been a member of the World Intellectual Property Organisation (WIPO) since July 1994 and is a signatory to the Berne Convention and the Universal Copyright Convention.

The bulk of intellectual property (IP) activity in Guyana relates to the registration, renewal and assignment of trademarks. Patent registration business is significantly smaller and there is virtually no copyright activity here, mainly because the 1956 UK Act has been repealed in the UK.

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