On 9 January, the European Commission published its biannual report on the protection and enforcement of intellectual property (IP) rights in third countries. The document identifies non-EU countries, including Ukraine, where the state of IP protection and enforcement gives rise to the greatest concern. The report provides an update of the existing Commission list of priority countries.
According to the document, Ukraine’s progress over the past two years has been limited, despite the country’s commitment to major regulatory approximation. The report acknowledges as a positive development the adoption of the law on collective management organisations.
However, the document alerts that some of the draft laws submitted to the Verkhovna Rada (the Parliament of Ukraine) would introduce certain restrictions, and are not in line with international standards and the European Patent Convention.
Among other issues, the report also touches upon trademark, copyright and related rights, payment of royalties to performers and phonogram producers, regulatory data protection, and online privacy.
The report states that the Ukraine–EU Association Agreement requires Ukraine to reinforce its level of IP protection and enforcement.
The EU has funded a twinning project to assist Ukraine in implementing the Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Agreement, and assisted Ukraine in the elaboration of new draft laws on IP rights. The EU has also financed a technical assistance programme to develop a geographical indications system in Ukraine. A draft law has already been prepared in the framework of this programme, which will run until 31 August 2020.
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