Geographical indications (GIs) represent a unique and valuable resource for EU producers in an increasingly liberalised and competitive global market. The European Commission should always act with a view to protecting production models and quality systems recognised globally for the beneficial effect of their sustainability on consumers and producers. The EESC highlights the positive trend towards developing "SIQOs" (official quality and origin indicators) and welcomes the European Commission's proposal to protect registered appellations of origin and registered geographical indications at international level under the Geneva Agreement.
A system is needed that ensures fair treatment of all European producers wishing to have their geographical indications recognised at international level as well. The EESC feels that the rights accrued by these geographical indications already registered and protected at European level should be preserved in order to avoid penalties and unequal treatment.
For more information please contact the INT Section Secretariat