On 9 November, the EU Commission adopted its 2017 Annual Work Plan, increasing the budget to 133 million EUR for co-financed programmes concerning the promotion of agricultural products: 90 million for single programmes, out of which 63 million for third countries, and 43 for multi-programmes. Call for tenders for the AWP 2017 will be published in January 2017. An info day for agricultural associations (including GI groups) will take place in Brussels on 31 January 2017.
With respect to 2016, according, to the Consumers, Health Agriculture and Food Executive Agency (CHAFEA), the requests of funds for promotional campaigns exceeded the budget available: 60 single programmes were financed (out of 199 applications), and 6 multi-programmes (out of the 27 requested). The main reasons for rejection are mentioned here (See the PPT, slides 4-5).
Furthermore, following the positive outcomes of 2016 (See the PPT), high-level promotional missions to Canada and to Iran, with the participation of Commissioner Hogan, will be organised in 2017.
Earlier this month, three GIs applications (Demerara Sugar, Demerara Molasses and Demerara Rum) were filed in Guyana, in the framework of a EU-funded program aimed at leveraging from the local GIs for sustainable development.
More information @ CTA Brussels Office Web Blog
On 1 December, the EU Commission adopted a legislative proposal replacing Regulation (EC) No 110/2008 on spirit drinks, with the objective to align the current legislation with the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union (TFEU).
The proposal includes the modification of Chapter III on GIs, to harmonise the procedures (application, amendment, registration, opposition, cancellation) with those available for agricultural products and foodstuffs under Regulation 1151/2012. Meanwhile, the specificities of GI scheme for spirit drinks are maintained. The Commission’s proposal has been sent to the EU Parliament and the EU Council for approval, which is expected in the first half of next year.
On 2 December, "Siège de Liffol" became the first non-agricultural GI granted by the National Institute of Intellectual property (INPI) of France under the “loi de la consommation" (Consumer Act) of March 2014
The "Siège de Liffol" is a wood chair originated from Liffol-le-Grand (Vosges), a city renowned for its industry of stylish furniture. The production area covers 185 municipalities of Haute-Marne, Meuse and Vosges departments in the region of Grand Est, in north-eastern France. More information (in French) at: http://france3-regions.francetvinfo.fr/lorraine/siege-liffol-toute-nouvelle-indication-geographique-homologuee-1146811.html
Meanwhile, at the EU level, the Commission is still finalising an Inception Impact Assessment, which should be published in 2017. However, political consensus has not yet been reached within the Commission to prepare a proposal for the recognition and protection of non-agricultural GIs at the EU level.