76. The representative of Argentina said that the expression "to facilitate the protection" referred to the establishment of a register where participating Members would make known, in the framework of the WTO, geographical indications that were protected on their territory and, in that way, make it "easier" for countries to obtain protection for wines and spirits. Referring to paragraph 5, second sentence of the Chair's note, which used the words "not to enhance that level of protection", she said that there should be no increase in that level. The TRIPS Agreement established in Article 1.1 that Members might, but were not be obliged to, implement in their law more extensive protection than that required by the Agreement, provided that that protection did not infringe the provisions of the Agreement. It also stipulated that Members "shall be free to determine the appropriate method of implementing the provisions of the Agreement within their own legal system and practice". Members had, therefore, the power to decide both on the degree of protection to grant provided the minimum standards required were met and on the way of incorporating the obligations deriving from the TRIPS Agreement in their national legislation. In other words, each country was sovereign in establishing the degree of protection as long as it was compatible with the Agreement, the mechanisms considered appropriate to protect geographical indications and the criteria for eligibility.
77. Under Article 24.9, there could be no notification or registration of geographical indications that were not protected in the country claiming the protection; to that extent, it was, therefore, a pre-condition. The rights derived from exceptions established in paragraphs 4, 5 and 6 of Article 24 of the TRIPS Agreement and which might be used under each Member's legislation must, therefore, be fully valid in the system. Article 24.1 was not linked to the current negotiations because the negotiations referred to in that Article aimed at "increasing" the protection of individual geographical indications, that is to say aimed at concluding bilateral or multilateral agreements to increase the protection of those indications.