Monday, 6 March 2017

France and Peru present cooperation action

A bilateral cooperation was signed by France and Peru back in 2015. The cooperation was in the field of intellectual property (IP) and economic development. Because of this, last week the 2017 Work Plan was signed.

Image result for france and peruThe plan includes: “information exchange, training of professionals in intellectual property, program to support companies in the use of the patent system, exchange of experiences in geographical indications, as well as strengthen the fight against piracy and the promotion of technological innovation.” There will also be a joint work with the Comité National Anti-contrefaçon which is the French Anti-Piracy Committee.

One exchange of information that caught my attention was addressed to geographical indication which will include the functioning of the ‘regulatory associations’ in the country. Thus, an official from INDECOPI will be trained at the Centre for International Studies of Intellectual Property (CEIPI) in France. The French has protected for centuries GIs e.g. XIV French legislation protecting ‘Roquefort’.

GIs in Latin America
Some Latin American countries have GI system which are controlled by the Government and/or owned by the state, e.g. Guatemala (art.81 Decree No.57/00), Mexico (art.167 Ley Propiedad Industrial), Panama (art.137 Ley No.35), and Peru (art 88 Decree No.1.075/08). This is a major point since farmers, artisans and Indigenous peoples mistrust government. In France the holders of an appellation of origin are the producers and groups of producers enjoying the appellation of origin in question. In Peru the state is the holder.

Peru on GIs
Peru has registered the handicraft Chulucanas (DO) for ceramics located in the town Chulucana (Resolución 011517). The association hold a national registration and also an international registration. Peru is part of the Lisbon Agreement and as such once chulucanas were protected in the country of origin the country requested its international registration at the International Bureau of WIPO, which keeps the International Register of Appellations of Origin – thus, chulucanas must be protected in all countries of the Lisbon system. There are 28 members and 6 are from Latin America.

EU on GIs
In the EU GIs are regulated separately from the TM system. Wines and aromatised wines - Regulations (EU) No 1308/2013 and 251/2014; Spirits - Regulation (EC) No 110/2008; and Agricultural products and foodstuffs - Regulation (EU) No 1151/2012. There is no protection for handicraft (as there is in Peru). However, EU is discussing the extension of GIs to protect non-agricultural products as well (see the 06/10/15 resolution adopted by MEPs). Around 25 per cent of the registered GIs in Latin America are for non-agricultural products. This is not a contravention. Actually the TRIPS Agreement and the Lisbon Agreement invite Member States to protect GIs. These agreements do not differentiate among GIs for agricultural and non-agricultural products. Yet in the Doha Round two matters were raised in regards to GIs: 1) Extending the higher level of protection beyond wines and spirits; and 2) to establish a multilateral register of GIs for wines and spirits which would be legally binding for all WTO members.

Source INDECOPI.

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