INTA Co-Hosts Policy Dialogue in Venezuela
GR Lex

A Policy Dialogue promoting a reform of the Venezuelan Industrial Property Law took place in Caracas, Venezuela,on Tuesday, June 14, 2016.

Co-hosted by INTA, the Inter-American Intellectual PropertyAssociation (ASIPI), and the Venezuelan Association of IndustrialProperty Agents (COVAPI), the event attracted 105 attendeesfrom the Venezuelan IP community and representatives from the Venezuelan Congress.

The discussion marked ten years since Venezuela’s withdrawal from the Andean Community, which several years later resulted in the reinstatement of outdated IP legislation. This reversal dropped Venezuela from a position of prominence to the bottom of the list of countries offering adequate IP protection in LatinAmerica.

The Policy Dialogue provided an excellent opportunity for the IPcommunity to discuss with representatives of the Venezuelan Congress the need to pass new IP legislation adapted to the changing global economy.

Orlando Viera-Blanco (Viera Blanco & Asociados, Venezuela), talked about “Intellectual Property and Economic Development” with the objective of showing the importance of having adequate protection for IP rights as a tool to promote economic growth and wealth.

International guest speaker, Ernesto Cavelier (Posse Herrera Ruiz, Colombia), spoke about the recent developments in the Andean Community for the protection of nontraditional marks, showing how the region has evolved on this issue during the ten years since Venezuela left the Cartagena Agreement.

Alfredo Corral (Romero Corral Abogados, Ecuador) discussed general developments in IP from a global perspective, as well asemerging issues that are the focus of international organizations such as WIPO, the World Trade Organization (WTO), and the Andean Community (CAN).

Rafael Ortin, (MHOV, Venezuela), professor of Intellectual Property at the Universidad de Los Andes (ULA), discussed the necessity of incorporating the most important emerging issues in a new Industrial Property Law during his presentation, titled,”Toward a New Industrial Property Law in Venezuela.”

Thaimy Marquez, former Director of the Venezuelan Patent and Trademark Office (SAPI), offered an overview of the critical issues that must be addressed in a new Industrial Property Law.

Closing the event was Mario G. Massone, a representative of Congresswoman Dinorah Figuera, Chair of the Science, Technology and Innovation Commission of the Venezuelan Congress (Asamblea Nacional), and acting Legal Counsel of the Commission, as well as the Coordinator for the Industrial Property Law reform. Mr. Massone explained the Congress’s legislative agenda, confirming the interestand engagement of the Commission in promoting legislative reform.

Antonio De Jesus, advisor at the Education and Culture Commission of the Venezuelan Congress, stressed the importance of engaging this Commission in intellectual property initiatives. He pointed out that IPRs are an establish ededucational and cultural right in the Venezuelan Constitution. Mr.Massone added to De Jesus’s point, emphasizing that because of this constitutional right, their two commissions can work intandem to achieve IP legislative reform. Leonel Salazar Reyes-Zumeta, IP professor at the Universidad Central de Venezuela and former President of COVAPI, called attention to the necessity of developing a program to educate about IPRs and create a link between the universities asknowledge centers and IP owners as a tool to promote development.

The event was co-organized by Jacqueline Moreau Aymard,(Moreau & Gonzalez, Venezuela), National Delegate to ASIPI; Matias Perez Irazabal, (Hoet, Pelaez, Castillo &Duque, Venezuela), President of COVAPI; and Cástor González-Escobar, (GR LEX, Venezuela). It was coordinated with the support and active contribution of Gabrielle Doyle, External Relations Associate Latin America at INTA, and Luis A. Henriquez, Secretary of ASIPI.

Although every effort has been made to verify the accuracy of items in the INTA Bulletin, readers are urged to checkindependently on matters of specific concern or interest.

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This note was originally published at the INTA Bulletin Vol. 71, No. 12 on July 15, 2016