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EUIPO Commits to Support Ukraine’s Integration into the EU Intellectual Property System

24-Oct-2023 | Source : The European Union Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO) | Visits : 1479

ALICANTE - The European Union Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO) announced in a press release that it would provide varied support to Ukraine to help its integration into the EU’s intellectual property system according to the memorandum of understanding signed in July with the Ukrainian National Office of Intellectual Property and Innovations (UANIPIO). An agreement for the implementation of concrete activities was announced during the visit of an EU delegation to Kyiv, headed by João Negrão, Executive Director of the EUIPO, on October 23-24.

The two-year plan was signed on October 23 by Mr. Negrão and Olena Orliuk, Director of UANIPIO in the Cabinet of Ministers in Kyiv. Mr. Negrão also had the opportunity to discuss priorities and recent developments of intellectual property rights in Ukraine (as EU candidate country) with Yuliia Svyrydenko, First Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Economy of Ukraine.

According to the agreement, the Ukrainian office will receive support from the EUIPO in trademark and design-related matters, including the enforcement of IP rights.
Commitment to support Ukraine

The meeting in Kyiv gathered representatives from the EUIPO, UANIPIO, the European IP offices from Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania and Poland, and the State Agency on Intellectual Property from Moldova (AGEPI). The purpose of the meeting was to consolidate the cooperation between the EUIPO, the EU national IP offices, AGEPI and the UANIPIO. It was also an opportunity to exchange views on how to support the efforts of the UANIPIO and the Ukrainian IP community to pave the way for future accession to the EU and for joining the European Union IP Network (EUIPN), a network made up of the EUIPO and the national IP offices of the EU.

The agreed Work Plan for the years 2024 and 2025, follow a Memorandum of Understanding agreed in Geneva in July 2023. According to Mr. Negrão, the agreed activities demonstrate the EUIPO’s commitment to support Ukraine:

‘The work plan agreed today in Kyiv not only stresses the EUIPO’s and the EU national offices’ commitment to support our Ukrainian partners in the run-up to EU accession, it also reinforces our role as an effective interlocutor for Ukraine in the dialogue with the EU partners.’

Attracting foreign investment and benefiting Ukrainian businesses

The work plan 2024-2025 will enable the Ukrainian office to benefit from EU support in several areas related to the protection/administration of intellectual property rights: management tools for examination purposes, support in harmonizing trade mark and design registration and examination practices with those of the EU, staff training opportunities and cooperation.

The plan also includes activities such as the mutual exchange of information on studies related to the impact of intellectual property on the economy, as well as enforcement and anti-scam activities. In addition, it paves the way to include Ukrainian trademark and design data in the EUIPO’s databases, which are the largest in the world, comprising more than 115 million trademarks and more than 20 million designs from five continents.

The adoption of the tools and practices for IP rights of the EUIPO and the EU IP offices is expected to attract foreign investment opportunities and help Ukrainian businesses when operating abroad.

The Work Plan will be complementary to the EU-Ukraine IP Dialogue, which reviews progress on the intellectual

property reform with a view to implementing the ambitious IPR provisions for future EU membership.

As part of the EU’s broader efforts to deepen the integration of the UANIPIO into the EU’s IP system, a regional IP cooperation project involving Ukraine, Moldova and Georgia is also being discussed.

Integrating Ukraine into the EU framework

In 2022, the EUIPO took measures to provide support to Ukrainian trademark and design owners and to safeguard their IP rights within the EU, while continuing the technical work and cooperation with the Ukrainian IP authorities.

The Work Plan is also built upon a ground-breaking agreement reached in February 2023 between the European Commission and Ukraine, allowing the latter to participate in activities financed by the European Union under the Single Market Program.

In June 2023, the EUIPO’s and the European Commission’s SME Fund was extended to support Ukrainian businesses, giving them access to funding to apply for IP rights like trademarks, designs, plant varieties or patents. Ukraine is the only non-EU country having access to the SME Fund and EUIPO is making its best to enlarge the benefits of the SME Fund to as many Ukrainian companies as possible.

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