tradoc_122291.doc - THE EXTENSION OF THE ADDITIONAL...

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THE EXTENSION OF THE ADDITIONAL PROTECTION FOR GEOGRAPHICAL INDICATIONS TO PRODUCTS OTHER THAN WINES AND SPIRITS Communication from Bulgaria, Cyprus, Cuba, Czech Republic, the European Communities and their Member States, Georgia, Hungary, Iceland, India, Kenya, Liechtenstein, Malta, Mauritius, Pakistan, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Sri Lanka, Switzerland, Thailand and Turkey I. O BJECTIVE 1. According to paragraphs 12 and 18 of the Doha Ministerial Declaration and the decision of the Trade Negotiation Committee (TNC) of 1 February 2002, the issue of ‘extension’ of the protection of geographical indications for wines and spirits to geographical indications for other products (hereinafter referred to as ’extension’) shall be addressed in the regular meetings of the TRIPS Council on a priority basis 1 , leading to a recommendation to the TNC by the end of 2002 for appropriate action. 2. This communication discusses various aspects of the ’extension’ by highlighting how it could be enshrined in Section 3 of the TRIPS Agreement, and formulates a proposal for appropriate action to be included in the report of the TRIPS Council to the TNC, by the end of 2002, pursuant to paragraphs 12 and 18 of the Doha Declaration. 3. This proposal is designed to have effects only for the future and would not affect existing uses of names that coincide with protected geographical indications to the extent that they have been in conformity with the TRIPS Agreement, along the lines of what is embedded in Article 24 of the TRIPS Agreement. II. P ROTECTING ALL GEOGRAPHICAL INDICATIONS EQUALLY 4. Communications IP/C/W/247/Rev.1 2 and IP/C/W/308/Rev.1 3 set out the rationale of ‘extension’ and, in particular, why the protection provided by Article 22 of the TRIPS Agreement, which is the only one available for geographical indications for products other than wines and spirits, is clearly insufficient, and how the protection provided for by Article 23 of the TRIPS Agreement for wines and spirits, if extended to other products, would solve this situation. The following reasons shall be, in particular, recalled here: There are today no economic or systemic reasons for protecting geographical indications for certain products differently from others. The risk of confusion between products originating in a specific region and having a special quality due to that origin, on the one hand, and products using the same denomination but not having the qualities derived from that specific region, on the other hand, is important and damaging for any product, not just for wines and spirits. The protection currently provided for geographical indications for products other than wines and spirits is inadequate. It does not prevent products whose names are ineligible for the 1 See document TN/C/1 dated 4 February 2002, page 3 2 IP/C/W/247/Rev.1, Proposal from Bulgaria, Cuba, the Czech Republic, Egypt, Iceland, India, Jamaica, Kenya, Liechtenstein, Mauritius, Nigeria, Pakistan, Slovenia, Sri Lanka, Switzerland, Turkey and Venezuela 3 IP/C/W/308/Rev.1, Communication from Bangladesh, Bulgaria, Cuba, The Czech Republic, Georgia, Hungary, Iceland, India,
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