EU-China Geographical Indications (GI) Roundtable 2022 Held in Brussels
Introduction: in order to actively implement the results of the China-EU leaders’ meeting and promote the China-EU comprehensive strategic partnership, from December 3 to 9, Pan Feng, vice chairman of China-Europe Association for Technical and Economic Cooperation (CEATEC), led the first industrial and business delegation to Europe for economic and trade activities after the pandemic. The delegation went to Hungary, Austria and Belgium for a week-long economic and trade negotiations. During their visit, the delegation had various meetings with Economic and Commercial Section of the Chinese Embassy in Hungary, Chinese Embassy in Austria, the Chinese Mission to the European Union, DG Trade and DG Agriculture of the European Commission. The Sino-Hungarian Industrial and Commercial Forum, Sino-Austrian Science and Technology Roundtable were successfully held during the visit. In particular, the EU-China Geographical Indications Round Table has been held in the European Parliament. The delegation will also go to France for more business activities.
On the morning of December 8 local time, the EU Working Committee of CEATEC and the European Parliament jointly held a roundtable on the theme of geographical indications in Brussels. Representatives from the political, business and academic circles of China and the EU gathered for in-depth discussion on a wide range of topics, including the great significance of the EU-China Agreement on Geographical Indications (hereinafter referred to as the Agreement) to the relations between the two countries and the new opportunities brought by the Agreement. More than 30 representatives from the Chinese Mission to the EU, CEATEC, the Chinese Academy of Sciences, the Directorate-General for Agriculture and Rural Development of the European Commission, the European Parliament, GI-related organizations, institutions and enterprises attended the event.
In his speech at the event, István UJHELYI, member of the European Parliament, said that the EU and China have made remarkable achievements in cooperation and protection in the field of geographical indications, and the agreement is very important in promoting EU-China trade and tourism cooperation and bilateral relations. At the same time, it has a far-reaching impact on the sustainable development of agriculture, and hopes that the two sides will strengthen cooperation.
Mr. Pan Feng, vice chairman of CEATEC, stressed the significance of the agreement in promoting China-EU economic and trade cooperation and economic development, injecting new impetus into the healthy development of China-EU trade, and enabling enterprises of the two sides to gain more protection in trade exchanges in related fields. In the future, China-EU cooperation on geographical indications will be further enhanced and provide more options for the Chinese and European people in their pursuit of a better life.
Mr. Peng Gang, Minister of the Chinese Mission to the European Union, said that agricultural trade is a key area of China-EU economic and trade cooperation, and the demand for high-quality agricultural products between China and the EU is increasingly turning into opportunities for products of both sides. By holding a GI roundtable, we can further tap the potential for cooperation and jointly promote China-EU cooperation in various fields.
John CLARKE, Director for International Affairs of DG Agriculture of the European Commission, said in his speech that the signing and entry into force of the agreement ensured the protection of intellectual property rights related to product names and production of geographical indications, and the holding of a roundtable on Geographical indications would greatly promote the local economy and create greater added value for tourism, food and the protection of cultural heritage.
Ms. Liu Chuang, professor of the Institute of Geographical Sciences and Natural Resources Research at the Chinese Academy of Sciences, stressed that it is crucial that science and technology contribute to the protection of GI intellectual property rights, and that strengthening scientific and technological cooperation in the field of geographical indications between China and the EU will play an irreplaceable role in the implementation of the agreement.
Irène Tolleret, member of the European Parliament and Europe member of AGRI Committee, Christelle CHÊNE, Worldwide Brand Ambassador & International Affairs Director of China’s Ningxia Xige Estate, Damien Plan, former Agricultural Counsellor of the EU Delegation to China, Eric PHILIPPART, Senior Policy Adviser on Tourism of DG GROW of the European Commission, Bernard DEVITT, Chairman of Belgian-Chinese Chamber of Commerce, had in-depth discussions and exchanges on the market influence of mutual recognition of GI products between China and the EU, brand quality improvement, and benefits brought to the two sides by the entry into force of the agreement.
The successful holding of this roundtable has promoted international cooperation and common development in the field of GI between China and the EU, played a positive role in deepening China-EU relations, tightening the bond of interests and enhancing trade in GI products between China and the EU.