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Ghana Works to Stop Pirated Textile Designs

In order to aid Ghana’s struggling textile industry, Ghana’s out-going trade and industry minister, Haruna Iddrisu, has decided to reconstitute a 16-member Task Force on the Seizure of Pirated Ghanaian Textile Designs to combat recent problems with pirated textile designs.

Iddrisu made the announcement last week during an event in Accra, Ghana where he emphasized the negative effects on the country’s textile industry that have resulted from the trade in pirated textile designs–one of them being the decline of Ghana’s textile workforce. The number of workers in the country’s garment industry decreased from 30,000 in the 1980s and early 1990s to 3,000 presently.

All Africa reported that President of Ghana John Dramani Mahama and Iddrisu plan for a nationwide sensitization program to educate consumers and traders on the difference between genuine and copycat textiles. Iddrisu confirmed the government would strengthen the Ghana Revenue Authority’s Customs Division to stop pirated designs at the ports of entry, including developing a photographic catalog to help customs agents identify textiles.

The ministry will also enlist Ghana’s embassy in China and the Chinese authorities to check for pirated Ghanaian textile designs before they are imported into the China, as well as work toward preventing their citizens from becoming involved in the infringement of Ghanaian textile designs.

Iddrisu said the government would reward anyone who provided clues to the leaders behind the illegal activity.

The Task Force on the Seizure of Pirated Ghanaian Textile Designs will be headed by deputy superintendent of police Samuel Naa Musah. Appiah Doryimu, a former chairman of the Task Force, will serve as an adviser. The group also consists of members from the Ministry of Trade and Industry, Ghana Police Service and other government groups and leaders from textile companies in Ghana.