A task force led by Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi will be set up on March 1 to formulate a strategy on patents and other intellectual property with a view to giving the Japanese economy a helping hand.

The task force, to be established under the basic law on intellectual property rights that was enacted last year, will be composed of all the members of the Cabinet and 10 representatives of the private sector.

Among the private-sector members will be Canon Inc. President Fujio Mitarai, Kadokawa Shoten Publishing Co. Chairman Tsuguhiko Kadokawa, and Mitsubishi Electric Corp. Chairman Tamotsu Nomakuchi.

Hisamitsu Arai, a former head of the Patent Office, will serve as head of the task force’s secretariat.

The task force is scheduled to hold its first meeting in mid-March, and will compile a program to promote the creation and protection of intellectual property by this summer.

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