On 3 June 2017, China and the EU, on the occasion of the 19th EU-China Summit, formally announced the protection of 100 geographical indications respectively from both China and the EU through a bilateral agreement to be concluded in 2017. The list includes products such as Bayerisches Bier, Feta, Champagne and Gorgonzola on the EU side, and Yantai Ping Guo (Yantai apple), Hengxian Mo Li Hua Cha (Hengxian Jasmine Tea) and Panjin Da Mi (PanjinRice) on China’s side. For the full lists, please refer to the European Indications and the Chinese Indications.
Among the 100 European products, 79 were included for the first time, whereas the remaining 21 were already protected by previous agreements. It can also be expected that the number of protected names will increase in the future as the EU alone has over 3300 protected products.
The purpose of this agreement, the negotiation of which reaches back more than 10 years, is to protect producers against counterfeits and meet the customers’ demand for high-quality products. As a result of increasing trade between the two economies, and with China emerging as one of the world’s largest markets for agri-food products, this regulation will likely have positive effects on their trade.
Within the next two months, interested parties can now comment on the selected products and, if necessary, raise any concerns with either the EU or Chinese authorities.
Richard Hoffmann is a partner at ECOVIS Beijing China. Richard obtained an honors degree in law and worked in Germany, the United States, and China for various prestigious law firms prior to joining ECOVIS. In addition to being a member of the board of ECOVIS International, he is Supervisor for the China business of a respected German company and shares his extensive knowledge to students by teaching commercial law in China at SRH Hochschule Heidelberg. He has published more than fifty articles in international magazines, frequently speaks at high profile events in China and abroad and is often invited as a legal expert by international TV stations. Contact: email@example.com
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