INTA Advances Its Outreach in Europe; Key Developments to Watch For

Published: January 15, 2020

INTA continues its work strengthening collaboration with governmental and regulatory bodies in Europe. Here, the Association provides an overview of its recent activities and provides information on key developments in Europe to watch for in the coming months.

In Brief-Recent Developments in Europe

  • January 9, 2020: The European Commission published its latest “Report on protection and enforcement of intellectual property rights in third countries.” Key findings include the remaining high level of counterfeiting in many of the European Union’s trading partners; and the lack of authority for customs authorities to take ex officio actions to detain, seize, or destroy counterfeits at the border, or to take action with respect to goods in transit. The findings further revealed that counterfeits are often not destroyed by the enforcement authorities; sanctions and penalties imposed for intellectual property (IP) infringements are deemed too low. The Report also indicated a failure to recognize geographical indications, as conferring rights in domain name disputes on the Internet facilitates channels for marketing counterfeits.
  • December 17, 2019: INTA attended the Internet & Jurisdiction Policy Network (IJPN) Workshop in Brussels, Belgium. The discussion focused on the European perspective on the future of the cross-border Internet, how to address transnational legal challenges in cyberspace, and the value of multi-stakeholder governance to develop standards and solutions. The workshop further served as a platform for the European launch of the Internet & Jurisdiction Global Status Report 2019.
  • December 17, 2019: The European IP Helpdesk published the second issue of its Bulletin, which takes a closer look at the dissemination and exploitation of research results, with a particular focus on “Go-to-Market” strategies. It puts together a mix of background articles, expert views, and “real-life” sample cases to give a flavor of the diversity of the topic and highlight specific aspects, especially with regard to IP.
  • December 16, 2019: INTA Policy Officer-Europe Carolina Oliveira met in Lisbon, Portugal, with the President of Instituto Nacional da Propriedade Industrial (INPI) Ana Margarida Bandeira, and other INPI officials. At the meeting, the two organizations presented their respective strategic plans and activities, notably on trademark legislation and practices and raising awareness on the importance of protecting IP and fighting infringements (particularly counterfeiting), and explored potential future cooperation opportunities.
  • December 4, 2019: INTA attended BusinessEurope’s Trademarks & Designs Working Group as an observer. Topics included an exchange of views with the recently appointed Deputy Executive Director of the the European Union Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO) Andrea di Carlo, on the priorities and projects of the EUIPO, in the context of its Strategic Plan 2020‒2025 and a discussion of the recent study on the economic aspects of geographical indication protection at the EU level for non-agricultural products.
  • December 3, 2019: INTA attended an event at Bird and Bird’s office in Brussels, Belgium, on the regulation of online platforms. Discussion focused on the upcoming EU Digital Services Act, to notably review the e-commerce Directive and the “safe heaven” clause (Article 14) with regards to online platforms. A public consultation by the European Commission is likely to start in the first quarter of 2020.
  • November 27, 2019: Sergio Tirro (Italy) became the new Head of IPC3 (Intellectual Property Crime Coordination Center), replacing Chris Vansteenkiste.
  • November 25‒29, 2019: INTA attended the relevant European Observatory Working Groups and Expert Groups in Brussels, Belgium. The Observatory is notably working on raising awareness about Europol’s upcoming 2021 Serious and Organised Crime Threat Assessment (SOCTA) report, to include IP in the list of priority crimes.
  • November 17‒18, 2019: The EUIPO held its Management Board and Budget Committee (MBBC) meeting in Alicante, Spain. INTA attended as a Permanent Observer. The MBBC adopted the EUIPO’s Strategic Plan 2025 and renewed INTA’s Permanent Observer Status to the MBBC for five more years, together with four other user associations and two other rotating observers.

Next in Europe-Important Upcoming Dates to Keep in Mind

  • January 31, 2020: Official Brexit date
  • February 17‒18, 2020: INTA 2020 Europe Conference on Brands, Sports and Esports: A Brand (R)evolution-Madrid, Spain
  • February‒March, 2020: INTA educational roundtables-selected cities in Europe: details soon available here.
  • March 24‒26, 2020: European Observatory Working Groups meetings-Eindhoven, The Netherlands

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INTA’s Europe Representative Office, based in Brussels, Belgium, represents the Association’s 1,800+ members across Europe (including those in EU and non-EU member states, and Russia and the Commonwealth of Independent States). Working in collaboration with staff at INTA’s headquarters in New York City, the Europe Representative Office leads the Association’s policy, membership, marketing, and communications initiatives throughout the region. To learn more about INTA’s activities in Europe, please contact INTA Chief Representative OfficerEurope Hélène Nicora at [email protected] and follow us on Twitter at @INTABrussels.

Although every effort has been made to verify the accuracy of items in the INTA Bulletin, readers are urged to check independently on matters of specific concern or interest.

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