After the signing of the agreement and the approval of the European Parliament, it will be officially adopted by the Council. The agreement is expected to enter into force in early 2021. Within four years of its entry into force, the scope of the agreement will extend to an additional 175 BILLION on both sides. These names must follow the same approval procedure as the 100 names already covered by the agreement (assessment and publication of notices). But just accepting that a particular product is indicated geographically does not mean that all counterfeits will stop. And the agreement between the EU and China is not yet final. The European Parliament has yet to agree on this point – an institution which, these days, is not really known for its sympathy for China. Nevertheless, the authorities estimate that it will come into force in 2021 and an additional 175 GIs are expected to be added by 2025. Geographical indications have also proven to be a useful marketing tool that helps to guarantee producers higher and more stable export earnings: according to a study commissioned by the Commission in 2013, a product with a geographical indication sells on average more than double the price of a similar non-geographical indication product. In addition, China is a fast-growing market for food and beverage products in Europe. This agreement will therefore benefit European producers and should give a boost to the rural areas where these products are made. The European Commission has just announced that the EU and China have signed a bilateral agreement on the protection of geographical indications against usurpation and counterfeiting. The agreement, first concluded in November 2019 and approved by the Council in July 2020, will protect 100 European gegis in China and 100 Chinese gegis in the EU.
The European Union and China signed a bilateral agreement on the protection of geographical indications (IG) on Monday, a label used on a product to indicate its origin. This is the first major bilateral trade agreement signed between the EU and China. This is why a mutual recognition agreement of 200 European and Chinese GIs (pdf) signed today between the European Union and China is important. The Chinese authorities recognized champagne as GI in 2013 and previously ten other European GIs, but this is the first comprehensive agreement between the two nations on the PGI and the “first major bilateral trade agreement signed between the EU and China” before negotiating a major investment agreement. Mariangela Grosoli, president of balsamic vinegar from the Modena consortium, said: “This bilateral agreement undoubtedly protects manufacturers and products from counterfeiting. But above all, there is care to consumers that those abroad can be sure that the product they are buying is original and authentic. It dates from 1747 and [Modena`s balsamic vinegar] is a product of considerable cultural importance. The agreement protects the names of 100 European geographical indications in China and 100 Chinese geographical indications in Europe from counterfeiting. Expectations of the new agreement are high, as Italy and Europe hope for a more prosperous 2021. Europe is a major global exporter of famous agricultural products, and the stakes of this agreement are important to them if it works. According to the European Observatory for Intellectual Property Rights Violations (PDF, p.
23), the European spirits and wine sector alone is losing 6,049 jobs and 2.4 billion euros ($2.8 billion) in direct sales per year due to counterfeiting.