France Joins Geneva Act of WIPO’s Lisbon Agreement

January 21, 2021

France deposited on January 21, 2021 its instrument of ratification to the Geneva Act of the Lisbon Agreement on Appellations of Origin and Geographical Indications ("Geneva Act").

WIPO Director General Daren Tang welcomes France’s ratification of the Geneva Act of the Lisbon Agreement.

The instrument of ratification was deposited with WIPO Director General Daren Tang by Ambassador François Rivasseau, Permanent Representative of France to the United Nations in Geneva and other international organizations in Switzerland.

France is among the Lisbon Agreement’s oldest members and main users of the Lisbon international registration system, with over 500 registrations.  

This ratification will allow France to protect both its appellations of origin and geographical indications under the Geneva Act, in particular those in the non-agricultural product category such as Porcelaine de Limoges (Limoges porcelain), Tapisserie d’Aubusson (Aubusson tapestry) or Siège de Liffol (chair), to name only a few.

The Geneva Act, which entered into force on February 26, 2020, provides producers of quality products linked to origin, with faster and cheaper access to the international protection of their products' distinctive designations. It further develops the legal framework of the Lisbon System, which helps promote many globally marketed products such as, for example, Bananas of Costa Rica, Champagne, Tuscan Oil, or Bohemia Crystal.

By joining the Geneva Act, France becomes party to both the Lisbon Agreement and the Geneva Act. This is part of a larger trend at WIPO where WIPO registration systems are gradually transitioning to single-treaty systems.  When all Lisbon Agreement countries have also joined the Geneva Act, farmers and artisans whose appellations of origin and geographical indications are protected under the Lisbon System will all benefit from the Geneva Act’s unique features and flexibilities.

About the Geneva Act

The Geneva Act, which covers 32 countries, is designed to help ensure that producers of quality products linked to origin are able to protect the distinctive designations of their products in multiple jurisdictions, either as appellations of origin or geographical indications, through a single application with WIPO and the payment of one set of fees.

About the Lisbon System

The Geneva Act, concluded in 2015, and the Lisbon Agreement, concluded in 1958, constitute together the “Lisbon System” for the international registration and protection of appellations of origin and geographical indications.  The Lisbon System, which covers 53 countries, provides protection for names that identify the geographic origin of products such as coffee, tea, fruits, cheese, wine, pottery, glass and cloth.

Examples of appellations of origin and geographical indications include Kampot Pepper (Cambodia), Comté (France), Tokaj (Hungary), Sarough Handmade Carpet (Iran), Tequila (Mexico), Porto (Portugal), Chulucanas (Peru) and Huile Téboursouk (Tunisia).

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