Protection in accordance with Article 22.2 of the TRIPS Agreement is provided by the Law on the Protection of Appellations of Origin and provisions of unfair competition (see the reply to question 1 above, the section on the protection against unfair competition and protection in accordance with the Law on the Protection of Appellations of Origin); protection is, in accordance with Article 22.2 of the TRIPS Agreement, provided, i.a. by Law No. 55/1997 Coll. on Trademarks (hereinafter as: "the Trademark Law"), which in Section 2, subsection 1(f) stipulates on the basis of absolute registration exclusion being taken into account by the Office ex officio the obligation to repudiate such a sign which may mislead the public, especially as far as the nature, quality and geographical origin of products and services are concerned; protection is, in accordance with Article 23.1 of the TRIPS Agreement, provided for the appellation of all products, not only for wines and spirits (see the reply to question 1 above).
[Answer 1: The protection of appellations of origin of products is included both in the Law on the Protection of Appellations of Origin of Products and in provisions on unfair competition. As far as the provisions on unfair competition are concerned, these are not regulated by a separate law, but are included in Law No. 513/1991 Coll., the Commercial Code. The Slovak legislative comprehends, under the term "unfair competition", such conduct that is contrary to the standard practices of competition and may be detrimental to other competitors or consumers. The activity being described as unfair competition will take effect only if these conditions are fulfilled cumulatively. A demonstrative enumeration of particular bases of unfair competition activity includes, as well, a provision on deceptive indication of goods and services. According to the provision, deceptive indication of goods and services refers to: (a) any description of goods and services that is capable of evoking a mistaken assumption in business circles that the goods or services in question come from a certain country, from a certain area, or a certain manufacturer (producer), regardless of the fact where such a description shall appear. It shall be irrelevant whether the deceptive description is provided directly or indirectly, and by which means. A fact that is in itself correct shall be considered deceptive, if used in certain circumstances or context in such a way as to mislead. (b) any incorrect description of goods or services, even if accompanied by an addendum such as "the kind", "the type", "the method", in order to distinguish deceptive as long as the description is still capable of misleading. (c) the use of any name, which is commonly used in business to describe a certain kind, or a certain quality, shall not be considered deceptive, unless accompanied by an addendum that may be capable of evoking mistaken assumptions, e.g. the words "genuine", "original", etc. The above-mentioned provisions shall not affect the rights and duties ensuing from the registered appellation of origin of products. Protection being provided in the scope of unfair competition effects, therefore, all appellations complying with the above-mentioned conditions, under a condition of its applicability, i.e. the existence of a competitive relationship between an infringer and aggrieved person (party). Protection being provided in appliance with the Law on the Protection of Appellations of Origin comes into being by the entry into the Register of appellations of origin administrated by the Industrial Property Office of the Slovak Republic (hereinafter referred to as "the Office") which, if by the law stipulated conditions are complied with, files the particular appellation. The above-mentioned protection concerning the registered appellation is absolute and stricter. In accordance with Section 4 of this Law, no one shall have the right to misuse a registered appellation of origin, in particular to misappropriate it or to imitate it, even where the true origin of the product is indicated or where the appellation is used in a translated or altered form if despite the difference there is a risk of confusion, or even where the appellation is accompanied by terms such as "kind", "type," "make", "imitation", or the like. A registered appellation of origin may not be used as the generic name of a product. Protection is provided, also, by Law No. 140/1961 Coll., as amended, the Criminal Code, which defines res gestae of a criminal act infringing the rights of a trademark, trade name and protected appellation of origin. According to Section 150 of the Criminal Code, the one who acquires the economic benefit by entry into free circulation of goods labelled with an assumptive appellation of origin being not in his/her exclusive ownership or by confusable goods appellation, will be sentenced to up to one year infamous punishment, statutory penalty or forfeiture.]