Monday, February 20, 2012

The Protection of Geographical Indications

The Protection of Geographical Indications

Tuesday February 28, 2012
11:00 A.M.
4/F J.V. Del Rosario Function Room 1
Asian Institute of Management
Conference Center (in front of Greenbelt 1)
Paseo de Roxas, Makati City

A geographical indication (GI) is a sign used on goods that have a specific place of origin and possess qualities or a reputation that are due to that place of origin. Geographical indications may be used for a wide variety of agricultural products, such as Champagne from the province of Champagne in northeast France; and Tequila from Tequila, Guadalajara in Mexico.

The Intellectual Property Office of the Philippines (IPOPHL) aims to encourage branding of products on the basis of their geographical origin. It has initially identified eight products that may be protected as GI, namely Aklan piña cloth, Batangas Barako coffee, Bicol pili nuts, Cebu dried mangoes, Dagupan bangus (milkfish), Guimaras fresh mangoes, Lake Sebu Tinalak from South Cotabato and Lumban barong.

The national forum slated on February 28 and 29 will bring together LGU officials and representatives of community producers such as the Lipa Coffee Board, Bicol Pili Board, Aklan House of Piña, Aklan Piña Man-Tra, Lumban Embroidery Association Multipurpose Cooperative, Guimaras Mango Growers Cooperative, and Lake Sebu Women Weavers Association, Inc. Speakers from the World Intellectual Property Organization and the EU, and the IP Offices of Thailand and the US are set to attend the forum, will attend the forum.

The participants are expected to produce a roadmap for the protection of GI after the forum. The roadmap will assist the IPOPHL in identifying products eligible for protection under the GI system, developing GI associations or groups, establish control, accreditation or conformity assessment mechanisms and push for the passage of laws that will create a national GI protection system under the IP Code or under a sui generis law.

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