Speakers at the event (from left to right, top to bottom): Manuel Soria Parra, Oliver Nilgen, Dr. Mathias Kochendörfer, Werner Albrecht, Karola Schober and Sabine Link
Speakers at the event (from left to right, top to bottom): Manuel Soria Parra, Oliver Nilgen, Dr. Mathias Kochendörfer, Werner Albrecht, Karola Schober and Sabine Link
Russian Federation

On 12 March 2021, IRZ organised a virtual “study visit” on the subject of intellectual property for Russian patent attorneys and representatives of the IP Court and Rospatent. Rospatent is the Russian equivalent of the German Trademark and Patent Office (DPMA). Around fifty participants followed the event with a great deal of interest.

At the proposal of the Russian partners, the virtual “study visit” dealt with the decline in trademark protection due to lack of use, well-known trademarks and geographical indications and designations of origin.

IRZ was able to enlist six German experts to deliver expert lectures at the event on the following topics:

  • “The decline in trademark protection due to lack of use in Germany and the EU and well-known trademarks” by Manuel Soria Parra (LL.M, a patent attorney, European Patent Attorney, European Trademark and Design Attorney) and Oliver Nilgen (a lawyer specialising in industrial property rights)
  • “The decline of a trademark due to lack of use in Germany” by Dr. Mathias Kochendörfer (a judge at the Higher Regional Court of Frankfurt am Main)
  • “The new EU application and protection system for geographical indications in the spirits sector” by Werner Albrecht (German Federal Ministry of Food and Agriculture)
  • “Agriculture and forestry – strategies to promote regional products in Bavaria” by Karola Schober (Bavarian State Ministry of Food)
  • “New developments in the area of geographical indications of origin” by Sabine Link (an expert in geographical indications and designation of origin at the German Trademark and Patent Office)

An interesting discovery for both sides was the fact that well-known trademarks in Germany play a rather minor role, since trademark owners have to continuously refer to them. In Russia, on the other hand, there is a separate legal institution and a special register for well-known trademarks, which guarantees lasting protection for these trademarks. There are many legal disputes concerning the registration and recognition of trademarks as being well-known.

The protection system for geographical indications was also met with a great deal of interest from the Russian audience, since this institution was only set up in Russia in 2020 and its distinction from the designation of origin and of previously registered trademarks is still being called into question regarding their application.

During the event, the participants had plenty of opportunities to chat with the speakers, which led to lively discussions after each lecture.