Earlier this week, the European Parliament accepted the assessment of the Community Trademark Regulation and changes to the Trademarks Directive, which will allow the proposed amendments on goods in transit legislation to move forward. The amendments have been “welcomed by business and user groups,” the World Trademark Review reports.
The updates, which are intended to harmonize national trademark legislation and European law, will empower owners of European trademarks to prevent third parties from supplying products to the European Union’s (EU) Customs territory if they are not approved for free circulation there. The rule will be also valid for goods that come from third countries which bear a non-authorized trademark that could be confused with a registered European trademark. Chrissie Florczyk, director general of the Anti-Counterfeiting Group, provided the amended goods in transit rule to the World Trademark Review.
Commenting on the amendments, Commissioner Michel Barnier said that the goal was to allow trademark owners to prevent counterfeit goods from entering their territories. The legislation will allow Customs to seize trademark counterfeit goods even if they are intended to reach a country outside the EU. The amendments demonstrate the European Parliament’s willingness to protect consumers even when they are not located in Europe, according to the statement.
Earlier this week, Cecilia Wikström, a Swedish member of the Alliance of Liberals and Democrats for Europe (ALDE) Party, said that trademarks are extremely important for brands and are more lasting than patents, since patents expire while trademarks can be eternal. In an interview ahead of the vote on the amendments, she expressed confidence that the “modernization” of the legislation will help enhance collaboration between national trademark offices and the European body in charge of trademarks.
What do you think of the new legislation changes?