What Is NOTAP? | Independent Newspapers Limited
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What Is NOTAP?

Posted: Jul 16, 2015 at 12:05 am   /   by   /   comments (0)

NOTAP is abbreviation for National Office for Technology Acquisition and Promotion. This is the body regulated by the National Office for Technology Acquisition and Promotion Act (the “Act”). The Act requires that every agreement or contract entered into by any person in the country with any other person outside the shores of Nigeria involving the transfer of foreign technology to Nigerian associates must be registered with NOTAP not later than 60 days from the implementation of the particular agreement or contract.

NOTAP is an agency of the Federal Ministry of Science and Technology. NOTAP was established in response to Nigeria’s need to facilitate the emergence of a strong STI system reflective of the desire to evolve a strong economy based on science and technology. Specifically, NOTAP systematically tracks the inflow of technology into Nigeria and strategizes for its adaptation and domestication. It also coordinates Nigeria’s initiatives in technology transfer; evaluation and registration of technology transfer agreements; promotion of innovation, patenting and intellectual property; technology advisory and support services; commercialization of research and development results; research-industry linkage; production of compendium management information system; publication of project profiles on research and development results; promotion and popularization of science and technology training and capacity building in schools and tertiary institutions; promoting industry driven research and developments in tertiary institutions and research institutions, etc. NOTAP serves as a functional bridge in sustaining the link between the research community and industry, thus making it a strong anchor for stimulating national development.

Therefore, where agreements relating to the transfer of technology, such as management, engineering service and technical services agreements, are intended to be concluded between a foreign company and its Nigerian subsidiary or any other Nigerian company, such agreements are required to be registered with NOTAP.

 

Functions of NOTAP under the Act

Section 4 of the Act provides for NOTAP’s duties. Some of them include:

1. The encouragement of a more efficient process for the identification and selection of foreign technology;

2. The development of the negotiation skills of Nigerians with a view to ensuring the procurement of the best contractual terms and conditions by Nigerian parties entering into any contract or agreement for the transfer of foreign technology;

3. The provision of a more efficient process for the adaptation of imported technology;

4. The registration of all contracts or agreements having effect in Nigeria on the date of the coming into force of the Act, and of all contracts and agreements hereafter entered into, for the transfer of foreign technology to Nigerian parties;

5. Without prejudice to the generality of the foregoing, every such contract or agreement shall be so registrable if its purpose, in the opinion of NOTAP, wholly or partially for or in connection with any of the following purposes, that is to say: (a) the use of trademarks; (b) the right to use patented inventions; (c) the supply of technical expertise in the form of the preparation of plans, diagrams, operating manuals or any other form of technical assistance of any description whatsoever; (d) the supply of basic or detailed engineering; (e) the supply of machinery and plant; and (f) the provision of operating staff or managerial assistance and the training of personnel; and

6. The monitoring, on a continuous basis, of the execution of any contract or agreement registered pursuant to this Act.

 

Registration of Transfer of Technology Agreements

Every application for the registration of a relevant agreement shall be addressed to NOTAP and shall be accompanied by such number of certified true copies of such agreement and by all other related documents including annexures thereto and such other documents and information as may be specified in any particular case by NOTAP.

NOTAP shall not register any agreement where it is satisfied that it falls within any of the following specification: (a) where its purpose is the transfer of technology freely available in Nigeria; (b) where the price or other valuable consideration is not commensurate with the technology acquired or to be acquired; (c) where provisions are included which permit the supplier to regulate or intervene directly or indirectly in the administration of any undertaking belonging to the transferee of the technology and are, in NOTAP’s opinion, unnecessary for the due implementation of such contract or agreement; to mention some.

 

Offences for violation

It is important that corporate and unincorporated bodies make it a point of duty to register any technology transfer contract with foreign entities, because violation of such registration is severe. Where an offence is committed by a body corporate or firm or other association of individuals, every director, manager, secretary or other similar officer of the body corporate, every partner or officer of the firm, every person concerned in the management of the affairs of the association; or every person who was purporting to act in such capacity shall severally be guilty of that offence and liable to be proceeded against and punished for the offence in like manner as if he had himself committed the offence, unless he proves that the act or omission constituting the offence took place without his knowledge.