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Seventh Meeting of the EU-RM Geographical Indications Sub-Committee Took Place

12/09/2021

On December 9, the seventh meeting of the Geographical Indications Sub-Committee, established in accordance with Article 306 of the Association Agreement between the Republic of Moldova and the European Union, took place. Due to the epidemiological situation and the implicit travel restrictions, the event was organized in videoconference format.

The meeting was organized by the State Agency on Intellectual Property (AGEPI), the institution responsible for the implementation in the Republic of Moldova of the provisions of the Association Agreement on intellectual property, including in the field of geographical indications. In 2021, the Republic of Moldova chaired the Geographical Indications Sub-Committee.

The European Union was represented by the European Commission’s Directorate-General for Agriculture and Rural Development (DG AGRI). The EU Delegation to the Sub-Committee was led by Susana Marazuela Azpiroz, Head of Unit A4 Neighborhood Policy and Enlargement, DG AGRI.

The Republic of Moldova’s delegation was led by the Director General of AGEPI Eugeniu Rusu, Chairman of the Sub-Committee, the delegation being composed of representatives of AGEPI, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and European Integration and the Ministry of Economy.

In the opening of the Sub-Committee, the Director General of AGEPI stated that: “The State Agency on Intellectual Property and other competent authorities have made considerable efforts to ensure that the national legislation on GIs is harmonized with European standards and to provide Moldovan producers with additional tools to increase their competitiveness and export capacity.

I would like to take this opportunity to express my sincere appreciation for your support in promoting the geographical indications of the Republic of Moldova on the EU market and to express my hope that this co-operation will continue in a constructive format for the mutual benefit of both parties.”

In accordance with its mandate, the Geographical Indications Sub-Committee is responsible for monitoring the implementation of the Geographical Indications Section of the Association Agreement and serves as a forum for co-operation and dialogue on geographical indications between the European Union and the Republic of Moldova. Thus, the participants in the 7th meeting reviewed the latest developments registered in the geographical indications system in the European Union and the Republic of Moldova after the last meeting held in October 2020. EU representatives briefed on the Policy Reform in the field of geographical indications in the process of implementation and the actions taken by the European Commission to simplify the use of the GI system in the Community. In its turn, the Moldovan side presented to the European partners the legislative-normative and institutional evolutions in the reference field, focusing in particular on the priority areas that need increased attention, among which the strengthening of the system of certification and official control of products with GI and also the need to support local entrepreneurs with traditional value-added products were mentioned.

The Parties also exchanged views and information on the need to amend and update the lists of geographical indications from the European Union and the Republic of Moldova that are party to the Association Agreement. The parties subsequently discussed about the implementation of the geographical indications section of the Association Agreement and agreed on the activities to be carried out by mutual agreement, including by promoting a GI assistance project implemented by the European Union.

We should mention that, currently, 8 geographical indications from the Republic of Moldova (“Romanesti”, “Ciumai”, “Divin”, Codru”, “Valul lui Traian”, “Stefan Voda”, “Apricot Brandy of Nimoreni” and “Rose Petal Jam of Calarasi”) are protected on the territory of the European Union under the Association Agreement and seven more geographical indications protected in the Republic of Moldova have been notified in order to be granted protection on the territory of the EU.

In accordance with the Rules of Procedure, the Presidency of the Sub-Committee shall be chaired alternately by the European Union and the Republic of Moldova. On 1 January 2022, the Presidency of the Geographical Indications Sub-Committee will be taken over by the European Union.