See the responses to questions 1-4 above.
[Answer 1: Korea provides protection for geographical indications through both the measures mentioned above. (i) In general, geographical indications are protected through the Unfair Competition Prevention and Trade Secret Protection Act, the Fair Labelling and Advertising Act, Trademark Act, and several other laws and regulations. Protection under these laws does not require any procedures for notification/registration. (a) Unfair Competition Prevention and Trade Secret Protection Act Articles 2(1)(iii) and (iv) of the Unfair Competition Prevention and Trade Secret Protection Act provide that the following acts fall into the ambit of the unfair competition acts: - an act of causing confusion with another person's commercial facilities or activities by using marks identical with or similar to another person's name, trade name, emblem or any other mark which is widely known in Korea; - an act of making a mark on goods, advertisements, trade documents communicated to the public or in communications, or selling, distributing, importing or exporting goods marked with such mark which would mislead the public into believing that the place of production, manufacturing or processing is different from the actual place of production, manufacturing or processing. (b) Fair Labelling and Advertising Act The Fair Labelling and Advertising Act enacted in July 1999 and enforced by the Korean Fair Trade Commission is not pursuant to the TRIPS Agreement. Nevertheless, it can indirectly have an effect of protecting geographical indications. - Rather than to guarantee the protection of intellectual property rights (IPRs), the purpose of this Act is to prevent unfair labelling and advertising that may deceive or mislead consumers and to facilitate the provision of fair and useful information to consumers, thereby establishing a fair trade order and protecting consumers (Article 1 of the Fair Labelling and Advertising Act). - However, geographical indications can be indirectly protected in the process of regulating undue geographical indications to protect consumers. - Relevant Provisions: "Article 3 - Prohibition of Unfair Labelling and Advertising (1) Enterprises, etc. shall not post labels or advertisements as set forth in the following subparagraphs that may deceive or mislead consumers, thus impairing fair trade order, nor shall they force other enterprises to do so: 1. false or exaggerating labelling and advertising; 2. deceptive labelling and advertising; 3. unduly comparative labelling and advertising; 4. slanderous labelling and advertising." - Notification on Types of and Criteria for Undue Labelling and Advertising. • Pursuant to the Fair Labelling and Advertising Act and its Enforcement Decree, the KFTC issued the notification specifying the types of and criteria for undue labelling and advertising. • Paragraph 10, Article II: In labelling or advertising the origin and manufacturer of the products supplied, any vague or false labelling and advertising that may mislead consumers shall be deemed as undue labelling and advertising. (c) Trademark Act When any trademark consists of or contains a geographical name, it may be rejected or invalidated, under one of these provisions: - Article 6(1)(iv) of the Trademark Act aims to prevent any conspicuous geographical name from being registered as a trademark, the reason being that such a name lacks the distinctiveness needed to be registered as a trademark, and it would be unreasonable to grant an exclusive right to a specific person, which would result in giving an unexpected disadvantage to his competitors; - even when a geographical name is not conspicuous, the registration of a trademark may be refused or invalidated under Article 6(1)(iii) of the Act if the trademark solely consists of such a geographical name; and, finally, - even if a trademark does not consist solely of a conspicuous geographical name, it may be rejected or invalidated under Article 7(1)(xi) if it is liable to mislead or deceive consumers as to the quality of the goods. (ii) The geographical indications of agricultural and fisheries products and their processed products are protected through formal registration procedures according to the Agro-Fisheries Product Quality Management Act(1999). Protection under the Act requires recognition and registration, by the National Agricultural Products Quality Management Service, of the geographical indications of agricultural and fisheries products and their processed products. (iii) The strengthened protection of geographical indications for wines and spirits is provided in the Notice Concerning Liquor Labelling and the Trademark Act. - Additional protection as provided for in Article 23 of the TRIPS Agreement is provided to wines and spirits in the Notice Concerning Liquor Labelling, an amendment to which took effect 14 June 2000. According to the amended Notice, even where the true origin of the goods is indicated or a geographical indication is used in translation or is accompanied by expressions such as "kind", "type", "style", "imitation" or the like, the use of the geographical indication identifying wines or spirits that do not originate in the place indicated by the geographical indication is prohibited. - An application for the registration of any trademark that contains or consists of the geographical indications of wines or spirits that originate in any WTO Member is to be rejected under Article 7(1)(xiv) of the Trademark Act.]
[Answer 2: As indicated in the response to question 1 above, Korea protects geographical indications through a number of regimes.]
[Answer 3: The protection of geographical indications through the relevant provisions of the Trademark Act and the Unfair Competition Prevention and Trade Secret Protection Act is also extended to services.]
[Answer 4: Articles 2(1)(iii) and 2(1)(iv) of the Unfair Competition Prevention and Trade Secret Protection Act, Article 3 of the Fair Labelling and Advertising Act, and Article 9 of the Agro Fisheries Product Quality Management Act provide the legal means for protecting geographical indications as required by Article 22.2 of the TRIPS Agreement. The text of the said laws were duly notified to the WTO pursuant to Article 63.2 of the TRIPS Agreement. The strengthened protection of geographical indications for wines and spirits, as required by Article 23.1 of the TRIPS Agreement, is provided by the Amendment to the Notice Concerning Liquor Labelling.]