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The role of the state in the protection of geographical indications: From disengagement in France/Europe to significant involvement in India

Marie-Vivien D.. 2010. Journal of World Intellectual Property, 13 (2) : p. 121-147.

Geographical indications (GIs) are remarkably different from other instruments of intellectual property rights (IPRs). Their acreage to the local provides an original scheme of governance. Contrary to other IPRs, GIs have only been homogenized in a very small way in the international legal framework. The issue is whether GIs are implemented as any other IPR, due to their collective and public dimensions. In particular, what is the role conferred to the state in the protection of GIs? The French legal framework, which largely influenced the European legal framework, is based on long traditions of protection of the appellations of origin and GIs where the role of the state has been declining, in order to give more responsibilities to the producer groups. The control task has been transferred from the state to the certification bodies to increase the guarantee of quality. The Indian experience, a post- TRIPS Agreement (the Agreement on Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights) example, shows a state and its agencies which are very active in the process of filing GI applications, including being themselves the applicant and eventually the proprietor. This might be justified by the lack of strong producer organization. These different roles of the state between France/Europe and India give a new understanding of the legal nature of GIs. (Résumé d'auteur)

Mots-clés : Étiquetage informatif; intervention de l'état; autorité publique; droit commercial; provenance; produit agricole; europe; france; inde; indication géographique

Thématique : Législation; Commerce international

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