Meeting of the National Commission on Intellectual Property

04/03/2013

On April 1 this year, at the Ministry of Economy of the Republic of Moldova took place the ordinary meeting of the National Commission on Intellectual Property (NCIP).

The meeting was chaired by the Deputy Prime Minister, Acting Minister of Economy, Mr. Valeriu Lazar, with the participation of all NCIP members. Considering the complexity of the topics on the agenda, there were also invited the representatives of the Ministry of Agriculture and Food Industry, Ministry of Regional Development and Construction, Ministry of Health, Ministry of Culture and Ministry of Environment.

In accordance with the work meeting agenda, there were discussed the following topics:

1. Monitoring report consolidated for 2012 on the implementation of the Action Plan for 2012-2014 of the National Intellectual Property Strategy until 2020. According to provisions of paragraph 1 of the Government Decision no. 884 of 22.11.2012 by which was adopted the National Intellectual Property Strategy, ministries and institutions referred to in the Action Plan submitted to AGEPI progress reports on the results of carrying out the actions included in the Plan. Information was provided by all 25 ministries and institutions responsible. Participants in the meeting approved the Monitoring Report prepared by AGEPI and recommended ministries and institutions responsible to ensure an effective collaboration for the execution of activities included in the Action Plan within the established terms.

2. Enforcement of intellectual property rights in the Republic of Moldova, especially copyright, in the light of the Special 301Report, prepared annually by the International Intellectual Property Alliance. Thus, according to the report, the copyright law in Moldova is solid and harmonized with EU directives, but the software industry and the cinematographic industry annotate significant problems of enforcement of the rights. In this context, NCIP recommends the Ministry of Information Technology and Communications to create an inter-institutional working group with the view of developing a sustainable strategy to reduce the piracy rate on computer programs in the Republic of Moldova, and AGEPI to increase society awareness of the phenomenon of piracy by organization of public and educational campaigns. Meanwhile, AGEPI will develop new training programs for representatives of the Ministry of Internal Affairs, Customs Service, Prosecutor General’s Office and other institutions responsible for the protection of intellectual property rights.

3. The situation regarding the protection of geographical indications (GIs), appellations of origin (AO) and traditional specialties guaranteed (TSG) in the Republic of Moldova. NCIP members took note of the information presented by AGEPI concerning the legal and institutional framework and the situation to date regarding the protection of GIs, AO and STG. It was noted that although in Moldova the national system of protection of GIs, AO and STG is in the process of consolidation, there is an appropriate and effective legal framework for the protection of GIs and AO, including the enforcement of rights. But there are still deficiencies in the process of their registration at national level, which makes impossible their protection at international and European level, consequently these effective tools to promote the export of local quality products remain unused. Currently, 9 AO are registered with AGEPI, of which only 2 national (Ciumai and Romanesti), another two applications for national AO being under examination. There have also been filed 4 national GI registration applications (Codru, Stefan Voda, Valul lui Trajan and Divin).

During the meeting, NCIP members discussed the RM-EU bilateral agreement on the protection of geographical indications for agricultural products and foodstuffs, which entered into force on 01.04.2013. In order to implement the provisions of this Agreement, the institutions concerned were recommended to develop and approve a Joint Action Plan, according to which Republic of Moldova’s commitments are to be fulfilled, and to advance the protection of local GIs. Implementation of this Agreement will contribute to the recognition, promotion of export and the continuing presence of Moldovan products with GIs and AO on the European market.

In this context, NCIP recommended AGEPI to organize training seminars focused on the issue of protection of GIs and AO for representatives of designated institutions according to GD no. 644 of 19.07.2010 and for authorities responsible for enforcement of rights.

Also, during the meeting AGEPI was recommended to initiate a draft law on the approval of national symbols associated with GI, AO and STG – winners of the competition, with the view of their widespread promotion.

Referring to some priority directions of development in the field of protection and promotion of GIs and AO, NCIP members determined that all competent authorities, charged with duties and responsibilities related to agricultural and food products with GIs, AO and STG, are to establish and develop, each in its field of competence, specific systems and procedures for recognition, registration and use of GIs and AO for products covered, and for registration and production of TSG. Implementation of these valuable marketing tools aims to help develop territories, attract investments and manpower in rural areas, and gain economic and social benefits.

National Commission on Intellectual Property is a consultative body established by Government Decision no. 489 of 29.03.2008 for the purpose of ensuring coordination and interaction of ministries, other central administrative authorities and holders of intellectual property rights in activities aimed at developing and strengthening the national intellectual property system, combating and preventing violations of intellectual property rights and fighting counterfeiting and piracy in the country.