The China-EU Geographical Indications Agreement officially entered into force today (March 1). The agreement is the first comprehensive and high-level geographical indication agreement signed by China with foreign companies. The entry into force of the agreement will further strengthen China-EU economic and trade cooperation and benefit consumers and businesses on both sides.

What is a “geographical indication”

Geographical indications are signs that identify the origin of a product in a certain region, and the quality and reputation of the product depend on the natural and human factors of this specific region, such as my country’s “Pu’er tea” or EU’s “champagne”. Both China and the European Union have rich geographical indication resources. In order to strengthen the protection and cooperation of geographical indications and promote the trade of geographical indication products, the two parties initiated the negotiation of the China-EU Geographical Indications Agreement in 2011. The negotiations have gone through 8 years and 22 rounds of formal negotiations and hundreds of informal consultations. On September 14, 2020, the two parties formally signed the agreement. On January 29, 2021, the two parties completed the internal approval procedures and notified each other. Today, the agreement officially entered into force.

Li Yongjie, Deputy Director-General of the Department of Treaty and Law of the Ministry of Commerce of China: We believe that the entry into force of the China-EU Geographical Indications Agreement will inject new impetus into China-EU economic and trade cooperation. For us, the agreement not only provides for high-level protection obligations, but also lists Knowing the list of geographical indications protected by both sides, the agreement will inject new impetus into China-EU economic and trade relations and benefit both companies and consumers.

At the same time, China also promised in the agreement to provide legal protection for relevant geographical indications in the European Union. This commitment is conducive to eliminating the worries of EU GI holders, allowing them to export related products to my country with confidence, so that our consumers can eat and use more EU high-quality products, improve the quality of life, and meet the increasing demands. The growth of a better life needs.