Información para el examen en el marco del párrafo 2 del artículo 24 del Acuerdo sobre los ADPIC (lista de cuestiones sobre las indicaciones geográficas) - Ver detalles del documento

Liechtenstein

Protection for geographical indications is provided through the Law of 12 December 1996 regarding the protection of trademarks and geographical indications (Trademark Act; Liechtenstein Law Gazette 1997 No. 602). Unfair competition law applies only if there is no specific provision in the Trademark Law. The recognition of geographical indications as such does not require registration. Nevertheless, if such indication is part of a trademark, it has to be registered.

There is not one single regime of protection for all products. As indicated under question 1 above, geographical indications for products and services are protected by the Trademark Act. Within the framework of the Customs Union Treaty between Liechtenstein and Switzerland of 19233, parts of the Swiss Law on Agriculture, in particular the Swiss Ordinance of 28 May 1997 concerning the Protection of Appellations of Origin and Geographical Indications with respect to Agricultural Products and Processed Agricultural Products (RS 910.12, RO 1997 1188), are applicable in Liechtenstein. For further information about the system for the registration of geographical indications under this Ordinance, see document IP/C/W/76/Add.5/Suppl.1 and the Swiss answers to the related questions of this checklist. Liechtenstein producers face the same registration requirements as Swiss producers under this Ordinance. As the product-specific law applicable in Liechtenstein is not national law but Swiss law, it will not be elaborated in detail in our answers to this checklist. As far as wines are concerned, reference is made also to the new Swiss Ordinance on Viticulture and the Importation of Wine (SR 916.140, AS 1999, 86) as far as applicable subject to the bilateral Customs Union Treaty. As the product-specific law applicable in Liechtenstein is not national law but Swiss law, it will not be elaborated in detail in our answers to this Checklist. Furthermore, the Agreement on the European Economic Area of 2 May 1992 (EEA Agreement) contains extensive references to European Community legislation on definition, description and presentation of wines and spirits in its Annex II, Section XXVII.

[Answer 1: Protection for geographical indications is provided through the Law of 12 December 1996 regarding the protection of trademarks and geographical indications (Trademark Act; Liechtenstein Law Gazette 1997 No. 602). Unfair competition law applies only if there is no specific provision in the Trademark Law. The recognition of geographical indications as such does not require registration. Nevertheless, if such indication is part of a trademark, it has to be registered.]

Yes. See the answer to question 2 above.

[Answer 2: There is not one single regime of protection for all products. As indicated under question 1 above, geographical indications for products and services are protected by the Trademark Act. Within the framework of the Customs Union Treaty between Liechtenstein and Switzerland of 19233, parts of the Swiss Law on Agriculture, in particular the Swiss Ordinance of 28 May 1997 concerning the Protection of Appellations of Origin and Geographical Indications with respect to Agricultural Products and Processed Agricultural Products (RS 910.12, RO 1997 1188), are applicable in Liechtenstein. For further information about the system for the registration of geographical indications under this Ordinance, see document IP/C/W/76/Add.5/Suppl.1 and the Swiss answers to the related questions of this checklist. Liechtenstein producers face the same registration requirements as Swiss producers under this Ordinance. As the product-specific law applicable in Liechtenstein is not national law but Swiss law, it will not be elaborated in detail in our answers to this checklist. As far as wines are concerned, reference is made also to the new Swiss Ordinance on Viticulture and the Importation of Wine (SR 916.140, AS 1999, 86) as far as applicable subject to the bilateral Customs Union Treaty. As the product-specific law applicable in Liechtenstein is not national law but Swiss law, it will not be elaborated in detail in our answers to this Checklist. Furthermore, the Agreement on the European Economic Area of 2 May 1992 (EEA Agreement) contains extensive references to European Community legislation on definition, description and presentation of wines and spirits in its Annex II, Section XXVII.]

The relevant provisions are contained in Articles 45 et seq. of the Trademark Act of 12 December 1996. For cases not covered by the provisions of the Trademark Act, Article 3(b) of the Unfair Competition Act may apply. 4

See the answer to question 4 above.

[Answer 4: The relevant provisions are contained in Articles 45 et seq. of the Trademark Act of 12 December 1996. For cases not covered by the provisions of the Trademark Act, Article 3(b) of the Unfair Competition Act may apply. 4]

Such an example might be "Malbuner" for meat products produced in Liechtenstein and "Malbun" being the name of a mountain resort in Liechtenstein. The same would apply to "Balzers", a high technology enterprise with its headquarters in Balzers, a community of the Principality of Liechtenstein. Those indications are determined in accordance with Article 46 of the Trademark Act.

The higher level of protection required for wines and spirits under Article 23.2 of the TRIPS Agreement is granted to other agricultural products according to the Swiss Ordinance of 28 May 1997 concerning the Protection of Appellations of Origin and Geographical Indications with respect to Agricultural Products and Processed Agricultural Products (see the answer to question 2 above) which applies to all agricultural products including processed agricultural products, with the exception of wine but including spirits.

[Answer 2: There is not one single regime of protection for all products. As indicated under question 1 above, geographical indications for products and services are protected by the Trademark Act. Within the framework of the Customs Union Treaty between Liechtenstein and Switzerland of 19233, parts of the Swiss Law on Agriculture, in particular the Swiss Ordinance of 28 May 1997 concerning the Protection of Appellations of Origin and Geographical Indications with respect to Agricultural Products and Processed Agricultural Products (RS 910.12, RO 1997 1188), are applicable in Liechtenstein. For further information about the system for the registration of geographical indications under this Ordinance, see document IP/C/W/76/Add.5/Suppl.1 and the Swiss answers to the related questions of this checklist. Liechtenstein producers face the same registration requirements as Swiss producers under this Ordinance. As the product-specific law applicable in Liechtenstein is not national law but Swiss law, it will not be elaborated in detail in our answers to this checklist. As far as wines are concerned, reference is made also to the new Swiss Ordinance on Viticulture and the Importation of Wine (SR 916.140, AS 1999, 86) as far as applicable subject to the bilateral Customs Union Treaty. As the product-specific law applicable in Liechtenstein is not national law but Swiss law, it will not be elaborated in detail in our answers to this Checklist. Furthermore, the Agreement on the European Economic Area of 2 May 1992 (EEA Agreement) contains extensive references to European Community legislation on definition, description and presentation of wines and spirits in its Annex II, Section XXVII.]

See the answer to question 44 under I above.

[Answer 44: As a geographical indication is not a registered right compared to trademarks, the latter will not be infringed. Trademarks containing an incorrect geographical indication will not be registered and geographical indications conflicting with a registered trademark may not be used.]

Geographical indications shall be direct or indirect references to the geographical origin of goods, including references to their property, having a relationship with their origin (Article 45, paragraph 1 of the Trademark Act).

If such products are bearing the name of that place, only for the purpose to pretend a certain quality: no. Neither does this definition comprise any requirements as to quality or reputation.

According to Article 46 of the Trademark Act and as there are no specific national laws in Liechtenstein as per today in this respect (see the answer to question 2 above), the origin of goods will be determined in accordance with the place of its manufacturing or the origin of basic materials and components used. Compliance may be required with other conditions, i.e. the observance of customary local or locally-prescribed manufacturing principles and quality requirements. According to Article 47 of the Trademark Act, the origin of any service shall be determined in accordance with the place of business of the person providing the service; the nationality of the persons exercising actual control over the business policy and management, or the domicile of the persons exercising actual control over business policy and management. In addition, compliance with other conditions may be required, i.e. the observance of customary or prescribed principles for provision of the service or the traditional association of the person performing the service with the country of origin.

[Answer 2: There is not one single regime of protection for all products. As indicated under question 1 above, geographical indications for products and services are protected by the Trademark Act. Within the framework of the Customs Union Treaty between Liechtenstein and Switzerland of 19233, parts of the Swiss Law on Agriculture, in particular the Swiss Ordinance of 28 May 1997 concerning the Protection of Appellations of Origin and Geographical Indications with respect to Agricultural Products and Processed Agricultural Products (RS 910.12, RO 1997 1188), are applicable in Liechtenstein. For further information about the system for the registration of geographical indications under this Ordinance, see document IP/C/W/76/Add.5/Suppl.1 and the Swiss answers to the related questions of this checklist. Liechtenstein producers face the same registration requirements as Swiss producers under this Ordinance. As the product-specific law applicable in Liechtenstein is not national law but Swiss law, it will not be elaborated in detail in our answers to this checklist. As far as wines are concerned, reference is made also to the new Swiss Ordinance on Viticulture and the Importation of Wine (SR 916.140, AS 1999, 86) as far as applicable subject to the bilateral Customs Union Treaty. As the product-specific law applicable in Liechtenstein is not national law but Swiss law, it will not be elaborated in detail in our answers to this Checklist. Furthermore, the Agreement on the European Economic Area of 2 May 1992 (EEA Agreement) contains extensive references to European Community legislation on definition, description and presentation of wines and spirits in its Annex II, Section XXVII.]

No.

As already set out in the answers to questions 1, 2 and 4 above, trademark law may very often be involved.

[Answer 1: Protection for geographical indications is provided through the Law of 12 December 1996 regarding the protection of trademarks and geographical indications (Trademark Act; Liechtenstein Law Gazette 1997 No. 602). Unfair competition law applies only if there is no specific provision in the Trademark Law. The recognition of geographical indications as such does not require registration. Nevertheless, if such indication is part of a trademark, it has to be registered.

[Answer 2: There is not one single regime of protection for all products. As indicated under question 1 above, geographical indications for products and services are protected by the Trademark Act. Within the framework of the Customs Union Treaty between Liechtenstein and Switzerland of 19233, parts of the Swiss Law on Agriculture, in particular the Swiss Ordinance of 28 May 1997 concerning the Protection of Appellations of Origin and Geographical Indications with respect to Agricultural Products and Processed Agricultural Products (RS 910.12, RO 1997 1188), are applicable in Liechtenstein. For further information about the system for the registration of geographical indications under this Ordinance, see document IP/C/W/76/Add.5/Suppl.1 and the Swiss answers to the related questions of this checklist. Liechtenstein producers face the same registration requirements as Swiss producers under this Ordinance. As the product-specific law applicable in Liechtenstein is not national law but Swiss law, it will not be elaborated in detail in our answers to this checklist. As far as wines are concerned, reference is made also to the new Swiss Ordinance on Viticulture and the Importation of Wine (SR 916.140, AS 1999, 86) as far as applicable subject to the bilateral Customs Union Treaty. As the product-specific law applicable in Liechtenstein is not national law but Swiss law, it will not be elaborated in detail in our answers to this Checklist. Furthermore, the Agreement on the European Economic Area of 2 May 1992 (EEA Agreement) contains extensive references to European Community legislation on definition, description and presentation of wines and spirits in its Annex II, Section XXVII.]

[Answer 4: The relevant provisions are contained in Articles 45 et seq. of the Trademark Act of 12 December 1996. For cases not covered by the provisions of the Trademark Act, Article 3(b) of the Unfair Competition Act may apply. 4]

With respect to the size of the country (160 km2), the geographical region will in many cases, but not necessarily, be the country itself. Should there be a dispute on a right to use a geographical identification, the Liechtenstein Office of National Economy has the authority to decide primarily such issues.

No.

Yes. Liechtenstein is party to the Madrid Agreement for the Repression of False or Deceptive Indications of Source on Goods of 1891 and to the Paris Convention for the Protection of Industrial Property (ratification of the latest Acts of both Agreements).

No, except for provisions contained in relevant international agreements.

No.

In the national law (see the answer to question 2 under I above), only the term "geographical indication" is used.

[Answer 2: There is not one single regime of protection for all products. As indicated under question 1 above, geographical indications for products and services are protected by the Trademark Act. Within the framework of the Customs Union Treaty between Liechtenstein and Switzerland of 19233, parts of the Swiss Law on Agriculture, in particular the Swiss Ordinance of 28 May 1997 concerning the Protection of Appellations of Origin and Geographical Indications with respect to Agricultural Products and Processed Agricultural Products (RS 910.12, RO 1997 1188), are applicable in Liechtenstein. For further information about the system for the registration of geographical indications under this Ordinance, see document IP/C/W/76/Add.5/Suppl.1 and the Swiss answers to the related questions of this checklist. Liechtenstein producers face the same registration requirements as Swiss producers under this Ordinance. As the product-specific law applicable in Liechtenstein is not national law but Swiss law, it will not be elaborated in detail in our answers to this checklist. As far as wines are concerned, reference is made also to the new Swiss Ordinance on Viticulture and the Importation of Wine (SR 916.140, AS 1999, 86) as far as applicable subject to the bilateral Customs Union Treaty. As the product-specific law applicable in Liechtenstein is not national law but Swiss law, it will not be elaborated in detail in our answers to this Checklist. Furthermore, the Agreement on the European Economic Area of 2 May 1992 (EEA Agreement) contains extensive references to European Community legislation on definition, description and presentation of wines and spirits in its Annex II, Section XXVII.]

Usually it is a private entity owning the rights of geographical indications.

If in relation to a trademark application, it is the Office of National Economy where the geographical indication can be obtained.

If in connection with a trademark, the recognition of a geographical indication takes place on the initiative of an entity or person.

If related to a trademark, it is the fee according to the Ordinance of 1 April 1997 regarding the collection of fees under the Trademark Act (Liechtenstein Law Gazette 1997 No. 785).

Purely geographic as the quality of the geographical indication is linked to its geographical origin.

[Answer 10: According to Article 46 of the Trademark Act and as there are no specific national laws in Liechtenstein as per today in this respect (see the answer to question 2 above), the origin of goods will be determined in accordance with the place of its manufacturing or the origin of basic materials and components used. Compliance may be required with other conditions, i.e. the observance of customary local or locally-prescribed manufacturing principles and quality requirements. According to Article 47 of the Trademark Act, the origin of any service shall be determined in accordance with the place of business of the person providing the service; the nationality of the persons exercising actual control over the business policy and management, or the domicile of the persons exercising actual control over business policy and management. In addition, compliance with other conditions may be required, i.e. the observance of customary or prescribed principles for provision of the service or the traditional association of the person performing the service with the country of origin.]

Only the criteria according to the answer to question 10 above.

[Answer 10: According to Article 46 of the Trademark Act and as there are no specific national laws in Liechtenstein as per today in this respect (see the answer to question 2 above), the origin of goods will be determined in accordance with the place of its manufacturing or the origin of basic materials and components used. Compliance may be required with other conditions, i.e. the observance of customary local or locally-prescribed manufacturing principles and quality requirements. According to Article 47 of the Trademark Act, the origin of any service shall be determined in accordance with the place of business of the person providing the service; the nationality of the persons exercising actual control over the business policy and management, or the domicile of the persons exercising actual control over business policy and management. In addition, compliance with other conditions may be required, i.e. the observance of customary or prescribed principles for provision of the service or the traditional association of the person performing the service with the country of origin.]

As there is no formal registration or notification for geographical indications as such (except when applied as a trademark) and geographical indications shall be presumed correct of corresponding to usage, no information must be supplied. Nevertheless, this assumption may be overruled by the proof of the contrary.

Only within the burden of proof in a litigation.

If in connection with a trademark, the same legal protection is granted to the person claiming the better right to a geographical indication as set out for trademarks (see the answers to questions 47 et seq. below).

[Answer 47: Enforcement is primarily granted under the Trademark Act. Articles 50 et seq. are related to the protection under Civil Law (declaratory judgement, action for execution, confiscation, precautionary mesures ...). Article 62 of the Trademark Act imposes a penalty for the use of incorrect geographical indications. Articles 3(b), 9, 12 and 22 are the relevant provisions of the Unfair Competition Act.]

Any interested person may oppose such use of a geographical indication.

See the answer to question 25 above.

[Answer 25: If in connection with a trademark, the same legal protection is granted to the person claiming the better right to a geographical indication as set out for trademarks (see the answers to questions 47 et seq. below).]

If in relation to a trademark: 10 years. The registration of trademarks may be extended upon request for further ten-year periods (cf. Article 10, paragraph 2 et seq. of the Trademark Act). Fees for the extension of a trademark are laid down in the Ordinance of 1 April 1997 regarding the Collection of Fees under the Trademark Act.

See the answer to question 28 above.

[Answer 28: If in relation to a trademark: 10 years. The registration of trademarks may be extended upon request for further ten-year periods (cf. Article 10, paragraph 2 et seq. of the Trademark Act). Fees for the extension of a trademark are laid down in the Ordinance of 1 April 1997 regarding the Collection of Fees under the Trademark Act.]

No.

No.

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Generally anyone who meets the criteria submitted according to the answer to question 10 above may use a geographical indication.

[Answer 10: According to Article 46 of the Trademark Act and as there are no specific national laws in Liechtenstein as per today in this respect (see the answer to question 2 above), the origin of goods will be determined in accordance with the place of its manufacturing or the origin of basic materials and components used. Compliance may be required with other conditions, i.e. the observance of customary local or locally-prescribed manufacturing principles and quality requirements. According to Article 47 of the Trademark Act, the origin of any service shall be determined in accordance with the place of business of the person providing the service; the nationality of the persons exercising actual control over the business policy and management, or the domicile of the persons exercising actual control over business policy and management. In addition, compliance with other conditions may be required, i.e. the observance of customary or prescribed principles for provision of the service or the traditional association of the person performing the service with the country of origin.]

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No.

The procedures set out in the answers to questions 47 et seq. below.

[Answer 47: Enforcement is primarily granted under the Trademark Act. Articles 50 et seq. are related to the protection under Civil Law (declaratory judgement, action for execution, confiscation, precautionary mesures ...). Article 62 of the Trademark Act imposes a penalty for the use of incorrect geographical indications. Articles 3(b), 9, 12 and 22 are the relevant provisions of the Unfair Competition Act.]

There is no determination as to the use.

[Answer 30: No.]

See the answer to question 40 above.

[Answer 40: There is no determination as to the use.]

Licensing is only possible when a geographical indication is part of a trademark; it then has to meet the provisions of the Trademark Act.

The use of a geographical indication remains unchanged by the new Trademark Act.

As a geographical indication is not a registered right compared to trademarks, the latter will not be infringed. Trademarks containing an incorrect geographical indication will not be registered and geographical indications conflicting with a registered trademark may not be used.

See the answer to question 44 above.

[Answer 44: As a geographical indication is not a registered right compared to trademarks, the latter will not be infringed. Trademarks containing an incorrect geographical indication will not be registered and geographical indications conflicting with a registered trademark may not be used.]

A trademark owner may prevent infringements by all the means available according to the answer to question 47 below. If a geographical indication is the major part of a trademark and the latter thus does not have distinctive function, the trademark may not be registered.

[Answer 47: Enforcement is primarily granted under the Trademark Act. Articles 50 et seq. are related to the protection under Civil Law (declaratory judgement, action for execution, confiscation, precautionary mesures ...). Article 62 of the Trademark Act imposes a penalty for the use of incorrect geographical indications. Articles 3(b), 9, 12 and 22 are the relevant provisions of the Unfair Competition Act.]

See the answer to question 14 under I above.

[Answer 14: No.]

Enforcement is primarily granted under the Trademark Act. Articles 50 et seq. are related to the protection under Civil Law (declaratory judgement, action for execution, confiscation, precautionary mesures ...). Article 62 of the Trademark Act imposes a penalty for the use of incorrect geographical indications. Articles 3(b), 9, 12 and 22 are the relevant provisions of the Unfair Competition Act.

Generally, every infringed party has the right to enforce a geographical indication. According to Article 54 of the Trademark Act, professional and business associations, authorized by statutes to protect the economic interests of their members as well as organizations devoted by statutes to protection of consumers, may file a civil action.

The courts enumerated in the answer to question 1 of the checklist of issues on enforcement have jurisdiction over enforcement actions related to geographical indications. Costs depend on the value in cause. There is a separation between the lawyers' tariff and the court fees. Both are regulated in acts and ordinances respectively. The costs of a proceeding comprise the court fees (including also all the costs in court and all other costs, in particular the representation costs of the lawyer). The fee to be paid for the execution of the proceedings depends on the value in dispute. It is a lump sum per instance appealed to for the decision, and a fee for the protocol depending on the duration of the proceedings, in particular the number and duration of the court hearings. To this must be added possible further costs (in particular the costs in court for experts and fees paid to witnesses), the amount of which cannot even be approximated in view of the different circumstances encountered in each procedure.

No.

Yes. See the answer to question 47 above.

[Answer 47: Enforcement is primarily granted under the Trademark Act. Articles 50 et seq. are related to the protection under Civil Law (declaratory judgement, action for execution, confiscation, precautionary mesures ...). Article 62 of the Trademark Act imposes a penalty for the use of incorrect geographical indications. Articles 3(b), 9, 12 and 22 are the relevant provisions of the Unfair Competition Act.]

Madrid Agreement for the Repression of False or Deceptive Indications of Source on Goods of 1891 and the Paris Convention for the Protection of Industrial Property (ratification of the latest Acts of both Agreements). According to Liechtenstein Constitutional Law, international agreements are an integral part of national law and national legislation will be interpreted accor-dingly by national courts.

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