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Switzerland Increases IP Cooperation With Ghana, India and China

by Ulrika Lomas,, Brussels

29 December 2008

The Swiss Federal Institute of Intellectual Property recently unveiled progress made in recent months in enhancing cooperation with regard to intellectual property protection with Ghana, India, and China.

The Institute (IGE) revealed earlier this month that approval has been granted by the State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO) to implement a cooperation agreement with Ghana in the field of intellectual property, with the goal of aiding Ghana in building a contemporary and well-balanced system of protection for intellectual property.

The project forms part of the Trade Sector Support Programme through which the Ghanaian government aims to improve the economic conditions of the country. The three-year project on intellectual property rights technical assistance will be launched in January 2009.

It also emerged that the 3rd meeting of the Swiss-Indo Joint Committee on Intellectual Property took place on November 19 in Delhi, under the auspices of a Memorandum of Understanding signed in August 2007.

The MoU established a bilateral committee dedicated to intellectual property which meets yearly, alternating between India and Switzerland, and is jointly presided over by the Indian Ministry of Trade and Industry and the IGE.

Finally, the Federal Institute revealed that the second meeting of the Chinese-Swiss Working Group on intellectual property took place in Bern on November 25.

The IGE explained that:

"The Working Group continued the discussions of their first meeting in Beijing, particularly the ongoing third revision of the Chinese patent law, the revision of the Chinese trade mark protection law, the strengthening of cooperation in the area of the protection of geographical indications, test data protection as well as a variety of questions regarding legal protection in China."

"The Chinese delegation included, amongst others, representatives of the Ministry of Commerce of the People’s Republic of China (MOFCOM), the State Intellectual Property Office (SIPO), the General Administration of Quality Supervision, Inspection and Quarantine (AQSIQ), the State Administration of Industry and Commerce (SAIC), as well as the Supreme Court."

The next Meeting of the Working Group will take place in China in the autumn of 2009.

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