The closing event of the EU-funded Twinning Project “Strengthening the protection and enforcement of intellectual property rights in Ukraine” was held on 5th of July 2016 at the State Enterprise “Ukrainian Intellectual Property Institute” (Ukrpatent).
Prior to the event the 9th Steering Committee of the Twinning Project was held, in order to summarize the Project results, discuss and approve the 9th Quarterly report. The achievements of the Project were also presented at the meeting.
Main achievements of the Twinning Project
«Strengthening the protection and enforcement of intellectual property rights in Ukraine»
28 months of implementation period, 29 EU experts involved over 69 missions;
9 Draft Laws prepared by Twinning experts in cooperation with counterparts from SIPSU and MEDT to align Ukrainian legislation to the acquis communautaire and the Association Agreement;
2 sets of recommendations delivered to improve IPR coordination model and Ukrpatent Digital Patent Library;
1 methodology developed to assess the piracy level in Ukraine;
676 beneficiaries trained in total on the best EU practices in IPR, with 220 examiners of the Ukrainian Intellectual Property Institute, 280 representatives of the judiciary and 176 custom officers, covering all the regions of Ukraine;
3 Study Tours with a total of 24 participants, to both Spanish and Danish Patent and Trademark Offices and to EUIPO;
1 publication prepared with main European Court of Justice case law in IPR.
The first part of the closing event was opened with the speech of the acting head of State Intellectual Property Service of Ukraine (SIPSU) and BC Project Leader, Mrs. Antonina Malysh. In her welcoming speech she stressed that one of the main achievements of the Project is having formed in Ukraine a group of IPR experts with a European level of knowledge, whose main goal will be the further implementation of the reforms and a wider international cooperation in the field of IPR. According to the head of SIPSU, the Draft Laws created with a joint effort of both Ukrainian experts and Twinning experts, have to play a vital role in fighting IPR issues, become one of the factors for improving business climate in Ukraine.
Mr. Nicholas Burge, head of Trade and Economic Section of the EU Delegation to Ukraine, underlined that with the entry into force of the DCFTA on the 1st of January 2016, the European Union expects Ukraine to fulfill its obligations under the Association Agreement, including those related to the intellectual property rights. The improvement of protection and enforcement of IPR will also improve the business-climate and Ukrainian international image. International business is currently worried by counterfeit issues, fair remuneration to the rightholders in digital environment. Mr. Nicholas Burge also noted that the EU Delegation to Ukraine is disappointed with the lack of political will in the part of IPR enforcement and with an insufficient number of judges specialized in IPR. According to Mr. Burge, Twinning Projects are amount the most efficient technical assistance tools foreseen by the EU to resolve this type of issues. After the ending of the Project, the first mission for Ukraine will be to implement the Draft Laws prepared jointly by European and Ukrainian experts, now blocked at the Ministries. Mr. Burge expressed his hope that the MEDT would apply the necessary efforts for the Twinning’s achievements not to be lost; for the knowledge transferred by experts to become a good base in the continuation of IPR reforms and in the further cooperation between the EU and Ukraine.
Mr. Pedro Velasco Martins, deputy head of Unit responsible for intellectual property and public procurement of DG-Trade of the European Commission, agreed with Mr. Burge concerning the urgent necessity to adopt the legal acts, drafted in cooperation with EU experts, into Ukrainian legislation; he also stressed that the efficiency of IPR enforcement lies in the support of law-enforcement, courts and customs officers. Mr. Velasco pointed out as well that Ukraine has all the necessary elements to improve the system of state protection of IPR and to raise the level of IPR enforcement.
Mr. Igor Benedysuk, head of the High council of Justice, pointed out the modernization undertaken in the judiciary. According to the speaker, one of the most efficient changes foreseen in the new Law on the Judiciary is the creation in Ukraine of the Higher court for intellectual property. Mr. Benedysuk stated that the Twinning Project became a unique opportunity for judges and administrative staff to discover European experience in IPR cases, while the handbook with Ukrainian translation of the ECJ case-law will be actively used in their daily work.
Mrs. Olena Minitch, head of the department for innovations and IP of the MEDT, informed the audience that the MEDT is now actively working with the Draft Laws created in cooperation with the Twinning Project. Two of the Draft Law have already been submitted to the Parliament, and three more are now undergoing the approval procedure by other public bodies, for instance, by the Ministry of Finance. Mrs. Minitch also noted the high achievement of the Twinning’s training component for the judiciary and customs officers and hoped for a continuation of fruitful cooperation with the EU.
Among other speakers who congratulated participants of the event with the ending of the Twinning Project were: speaking on the behalf of the MS Project Leader Mrs. Cristina Fernandez (Spain) — Mrs. Silvia Navarez; deputy Junior Project Leader, representative of the Danish Patent and Trademark Office Mr. Soren Thomsen; head of the department for economic development and environment of the International and Ibero-American Foundation for Administration and Public Policies (FIIAPP) Mrs. Sonsoles Mories Alvarez.
Second part of the event, moderated by the Resident Twinning Adviser Mr. Pablo Rodenas, was dedicated to the main achievements of the Project. Speeches were made by the following Component leaders: Mr. Mihaly Ficsor (Component 1), representative of the Hungarian Copyright Council; Mrs. Silvia Navarez (Component 2) and Mr. Luis Gimeno (Component 3), representing the Spanish Patent and Trademark Office (SPTO). When discussing results of the Twinning Project, Ukrainian system of IPR protection was represented by: head of the copyright and related rights unit of Ukrpatent Mr. Sergii Zaianchukovsky; head of the legal department for industrial property of SIPSU Mrs. Inna Shatova and head of the examination department of Ukrpatent Mrs. Nataliia Petrova.
The leading IPR experts from Ukrainian part, for instance, underlined that the Twinning Project has become a good start for a dialogue between Ukrainian and European expert circles; more years of fruitful cooperation are to come in the field of improvement of IPR protection, introduction of EU and international standards. European experts stressed the fact that this Project was a bidirectional exchange of best practices: when preparing trainings and communicating with Ukrainian IPR experts, EU experts not only found answers to complicated issues together with their Ukrainian counterparts, but also improved their own professional level.
Representatives of the High economic court, High administrative court and State fiscal service of Ukraine also took part in the second part of the closing event, thanking both the participants and the management of the Twinning Project for the opportunity to participate in training activities, organized for the abovementioned institutions, to have a practical glance of the EU best practices that will be soon implemented in Ukraine.
In his final speech, Mr. Pablo Rodenas, Resident Twinning Adviser, presented the audience with the main statistics and achievements of the Project in Ukraine (see above). The Spanish expert drew the public’s attention to the publication “Case las of the Court of Justice of the European Union in the field of intellectual property”. This publication, prepared by the Twinning Project and translated into Ukrainian, contains 29 decisions of the CJEU that became decisive for the definition of the IPR doctrine. This publication may be downloaded in the electronic form.
(PDF, 1,7 MB)