Expocentre Marks World IP Day by Taking Action Against Counterfeiting
April 26 is World IP Day. It has been celebrated since 2001, but the event from which this Day originates happened much earlier – 26 April 1970, when an International Convention Establishing the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) came into force. WIPO’s activity is aimed primarily at developing and expanding a balanced and accessible international IP system across the globe, including countries like Russia where the IP protection system is still far from perfect.
An important role in promoting innovations that fall within the category of intellectual property belongs to the exhibition industry. As Sergei Bednov, Director General of Expocentre Fairgrounds, pointed out: ‘Major international exhibitions featuring leading companies from Russia and other countries are not only a meeting point for manufacturers and customers, but also an opportunity to assess commercial potential of their innovations’. This is something that cannot be done without effective protection and enforcement of inventors’ exclusive rights.
The developers of new products, in particular, need guarantee of legal protection of their intellectual property at exhibitions. It is a matter of principle for them. The demonstration of innovations at exhibitions without temporary protection can be qualified as ‘destroying novelty’ of the inventions during patent examination. It may also be that unscrupulous competitors would take advantage of an invention and claim rights to it.
To tackle this urgent issue Expocentre has come up with a number of initiatives over the recent years. As long as four years ago Expocentre and the Russian Chamber of Commerce and Industry launched Russia’s first ever annual exhibition and congress dedicated to intellectual property issues - the Expopriority International Forum on Intellectual Property – aiming to improve the IP protection and enforcement system related to the demonstration of innovations at exhibitions and make the system efficient.
The Forum is accompanied with an exhibition of innovations. Starting with the first edition of the Forum in December 2009 Expocentre has been covering the cost of preliminary examination for novelty and industrial applicability of inventions to be exhibited at Expocentre’s exhibitions. The company has also started to issue Certificates of Demonstration of Exhibits at an Exhibition, which enable exhibitors to claim ‘exception to lack of novelty’ when applying for a patent.
Expopriority has now become a major national and international event. It enjoys support from the Federation Council of the RF Federal Assembly and the Russian Federal Intellectual Property Service.
It receives considerable assistance from the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO), the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC), the International Federation of Inventors’ Associations (IFIA), the International Federation of Exhibition and Event Services (IFES) and the Russian Union of Exhibitions and Fairs (RUEF).
The 4th edition of the International Forum on Intellectual Property Expopriority’2012 presented a new very important IP project called Expocentre For Counterfeit-Free Exhibitions, which has now become part of all major exhibitions and trade fairs of the Fairgrounds. Expocentre arranges a special stand at its exhibitions where exhibitors and visitors can consult leading IP lawyers. The lawyers provide information about existing practices and ways to protect intellectual property, as well as legal advice in dealing with disputes related to IP infringement.
So, exhibitors can not only expose counterfeit exhibits during an exhibition but also get prompt legal assistance on this matter.
Expocentre For Counterfeit-Free Exhibitions makes it possible to minimize the number of counterfeit goods at Expocentre’s exhibitions and improve IP protection for Russian and foreign exhibitors willing to expand their business in Russia.
Expocentre is currently running a number of exhibitions on its premises at Krasnaya Presnya, and one of them is Tires & Rubber’2013 where IP lawyers are at work.
We can definitely say that Expocentre marks World IP Day by taking action against counterfeiting.