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EU–China Geographical Indications Agreement

05-11-2020

During the November I part-session, Parliament is due to vote on giving its consent to the conclusion of the EU China agreement on cooperation on, and protection of, geographical indications (GIs), i.e. distinctive signs attached, mainly, to agri-food products that have a given quality, reputation or other characteristics that are attributable to their specific geographical origin. The agreement adds a new element to the legal framework for EU relations with China that is currently based, in particular ...

During the November I part-session, Parliament is due to vote on giving its consent to the conclusion of the EU China agreement on cooperation on, and protection of, geographical indications (GIs), i.e. distinctive signs attached, mainly, to agri-food products that have a given quality, reputation or other characteristics that are attributable to their specific geographical origin. The agreement adds a new element to the legal framework for EU relations with China that is currently based, in particular, on the 1985 European Economic Community–China Trade and Cooperation Agreement. It seeks to protect 100 EU GIs and 100 Chinese GIs in each other's territories against imitation and usurpation, and to bring the principle of reciprocity to bear in EU-China ties.

EU-China geographical indications agreement

02-09-2020

On 6 November 2019, the EU and China concluded negotiations on a standalone agreement on cooperation on, and protection of, geographical indications (GIs), i.e. distinctive signs attached to (mainly) agricultural products that have a given quality, reputation or other characteristics that are attributable to their specific geographic origin. GIs are a type of intellectual property right (IPR) protected at multilateral level under the Agreement on Trade-related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights ...

On 6 November 2019, the EU and China concluded negotiations on a standalone agreement on cooperation on, and protection of, geographical indications (GIs), i.e. distinctive signs attached to (mainly) agricultural products that have a given quality, reputation or other characteristics that are attributable to their specific geographic origin. GIs are a type of intellectual property right (IPR) protected at multilateral level under the Agreement on Trade-related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS), and in the EU under a sui generis GI protection regime. The reciprocal EU-China agreement seeks to protect 100 EU GIs in China and 100 Chinese GIs in the EU against imitation and usurpation. On 20 July 2020, the Council endorsed its signature, and the European Parliament has now to give its consent for the agreement's conclusion. Once in force, the agreement could help boost EU exports of high-quality foodstuffs, wines and spirits to the EU's third-largest destination for agrifood exports, and foster rural development. It would also expand global recognition of the EU's sui generis GI protection regime, a key EU trade policy objective.

Intellectual, industrial and commercial property

01-10-2017

Intellectual property includes all exclusive rights to intellectual creations. It encompasses two types of rights: industrial property, which includes inventions (patents), trademarks, industrial designs and models and designations of origin, and copyright, which includes artistic and literary property. Since the entry into force of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union in 2009, the EU has had explicit competence for intellectual property rights (Article 118).

Intellectual property includes all exclusive rights to intellectual creations. It encompasses two types of rights: industrial property, which includes inventions (patents), trademarks, industrial designs and models and designations of origin, and copyright, which includes artistic and literary property. Since the entry into force of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union in 2009, the EU has had explicit competence for intellectual property rights (Article 118).

Future of cultural and creative industries

07-12-2016

Cultural and creative industries have the potential to help to alleviate the current economic and employment difficulties in the European Union, and to promote inclusive and sustainable growth as well as innovation. A European Parliament own-initiative report on a coherent EU policy for cultural and creative industries is expected to be discussed at the December plenary session.

Cultural and creative industries have the potential to help to alleviate the current economic and employment difficulties in the European Union, and to promote inclusive and sustainable growth as well as innovation. A European Parliament own-initiative report on a coherent EU policy for cultural and creative industries is expected to be discussed at the December plenary session.

Organised crime in the European Union

21-10-2015

It is impossible to measure accurately the socio-economic cost of crime. However, the estimates available invariably quote very high figures, which lead to reflection in times of financial crisis and austerity. Numerous organised crime groups are active in the EU, often with cross-border reach and multi-ethnic composition. There is a clear tendency of rigid and hierarchical structures being replaced by loose networks of small and volatile groups. These may be better adapted to the modern world with ...

It is impossible to measure accurately the socio-economic cost of crime. However, the estimates available invariably quote very high figures, which lead to reflection in times of financial crisis and austerity. Numerous organised crime groups are active in the EU, often with cross-border reach and multi-ethnic composition. There is a clear tendency of rigid and hierarchical structures being replaced by loose networks of small and volatile groups. These may be better adapted to the modern world with its rapid changes. Some groups, having established a strong position in their countries of origin, go on to engage in illicit markets throughout the EU. They make use of their reputations and sophistication in certain types of crime to form profitable alliances with other groups. Italian, Russian and Albanian-speaking organisations are but a few of the 'leaders' in transnational crime in the EU. It is difficult to think of a criminal activity that would not be considered by organised crime, with the profit and risk involved being the major criteria for their possible involvement. Apart from 'traditional' crime, including drug trafficking, such groups increasingly engage in legal business activities, which enables them to launder illegal gains, while benefiting from attractive licit markets. In any case, collusion of corrupt officials and dishonest businessmen is crucial to the success of such criminal enterprises. Please click here for the full publication in PDF format

Tobacco agreements: Fighting illicit tobacco trade

13-05-2015

To fight illicit trade in tobacco products, the European Union and its Member States currently have agreements with the four largest tobacco manufacturers. The European Commission has now proposed that the EU join a new international agreement in this field. The topic is due to be discussed with the Commission during the May I plenary session.

To fight illicit trade in tobacco products, the European Union and its Member States currently have agreements with the four largest tobacco manufacturers. The European Commission has now proposed that the EU join a new international agreement in this field. The topic is due to be discussed with the Commission during the May I plenary session.

Medicinal products in the European Union: The legal framework for medicines for human use

01-04-2015

EU legislation on human medicines goes back 50 years. Its twofold aim is to safeguard public health without hindering development of the European pharmaceutical industry or trade in medicinal products. The regulatory framework is complex and covers the entire lifecycle of a medicine, from manufacture, to clinical trials, to marketing authorisation, to pharmacovigilance and patient information. Added to that, the principles of good manufacturing, distribution and pharmacovigilance practice contribute ...

EU legislation on human medicines goes back 50 years. Its twofold aim is to safeguard public health without hindering development of the European pharmaceutical industry or trade in medicinal products. The regulatory framework is complex and covers the entire lifecycle of a medicine, from manufacture, to clinical trials, to marketing authorisation, to pharmacovigilance and patient information. Added to that, the principles of good manufacturing, distribution and pharmacovigilance practice contribute to increasing medicines' safety. An emerging approach to granting early access to medicines – adaptive pathways – could prove its future merits for patients with a medical condition not adequately addressed by an existing therapy.

Trademark reform package

20-02-2014

For more than 15 years there has been a dual system of trademark law in Europe: an EU-wide Community trademark, and harmonised national trademarks. The Commission proposal aims at more harmonisation and coordination, but does not address trademark-related concerns over free expression. The Parliament's Legal Affairs Committee has put forward numerous amendments, in particular explicitly allowing to use trademarks for purposes of parody, artistic expression, crticism or comment, as well as for offering ...

For more than 15 years there has been a dual system of trademark law in Europe: an EU-wide Community trademark, and harmonised national trademarks. The Commission proposal aims at more harmonisation and coordination, but does not address trademark-related concerns over free expression. The Parliament's Legal Affairs Committee has put forward numerous amendments, in particular explicitly allowing to use trademarks for purposes of parody, artistic expression, crticism or comment, as well as for offering genuine products, intended as alternatives for well-known brands.

The Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) : An Assessment

11-07-2011

The ACTA was motivated by a desire to establish equivalent provisions in international trade agreements containing rules on anti-counterfeiting. This is important at a time when free trade agreements are being negotiated by different parties. For the European Union it is also of importance to protect EU intellectual property rights (IPR) as future EU competitiveness depends on its ability to move into higher value added activities such as those for which IPRs are important. At the same time international ...

The ACTA was motivated by a desire to establish equivalent provisions in international trade agreements containing rules on anti-counterfeiting. This is important at a time when free trade agreements are being negotiated by different parties. For the European Union it is also of importance to protect EU intellectual property rights (IPR) as future EU competitiveness depends on its ability to move into higher value added activities such as those for which IPRs are important. At the same time international agreements on IPRs will only be sustainable when they have the support of all parties. Within the EU the ACTA has also been the source of some concerns regarding the non-transparent way it was negotiated and whether it meets to aims agreed by the European Parliament and Commission that it would be compatible with the existing acquis communautaire and the World Trade Organisation’s Trade Related intellectual Property rights (TRIPs) Agreement.

External author

Anselm Kamperman Sanders (Faculty of Law, Maastricht University, the Netherlands) ; Dalindyebo Bafana Shabalala (Faculty of Law, Maastricht University, the Netherlands) ; Anke Moerland (Faculty of Law, Maastricht University, the Netherlands) ; Meir Pugatch (University of Haifa, Israel) and Paolo R. Vergano (Fratini Vergano, European Lawyers)

Note on the Pharmaceutical Package for the EP Information Offices (EPIOs)

16-08-2010

The Pharmaceutical Package in this document refers to the initiatives taken by the European Commission under the "Communication on the future of the single market in pharmaceuticals for human use", setting out the EC's vision for the sector. It comprises three pieces of legislation put forward to the European Parliament on different aspects of medicinal products. The proposals cover: information to patients on prescription medicines, pharmacovigilance, and patient safety and falsified medicines. ...

The Pharmaceutical Package in this document refers to the initiatives taken by the European Commission under the "Communication on the future of the single market in pharmaceuticals for human use", setting out the EC's vision for the sector. It comprises three pieces of legislation put forward to the European Parliament on different aspects of medicinal products. The proposals cover: information to patients on prescription medicines, pharmacovigilance, and patient safety and falsified medicines. These legislative proposals have a direct impact on public health, as well as connections with internal market and industrial policies. In the European Parliament the Committee on Environment, Public Health and Food Safety-ENVI is leading these reports. The committees on the Internal Market-IMCO and Industry, Research & Energy-ITRE are responsible for opinions. This note provides a general overview of the present situation on public health policy and pharmaceutical products in the EU, taking into account its degree of implementation and impact. The note presents the three proposals from a public health perspective with regards to their present state of advancement inside the legislative process. Finally it mentions the main stakeholders for these subjects. The note includes an annex with the key officials responsible for this policy area in the EU institutions. IP/

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