Geographical Indications of India Socio- Economic and Development Issues

IPR, Legalities, Policy

Geographical Indications of India Socio- Economic and Development Issues

Gautam, Kumar

With Intellectual Property Rights (IPRs)1 increasingly influencing trades both at the national and international level; harnessing trade benefits depends on the degree of protection enjoyed by the owners of the IPRs. Geographical Indications (GI) is one of the six Trade-Related Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS) of the World Trade Organisation (WTO)2 that seeks to provide comprehensive and effective protection to goods registered as GI goods. Geographical Indication (GI) is defined3 as any indication that identifies a good as originating from a particular place, where a given quality, reputation or other characteristics of the good are essentially attributable to its geographical origin. GIs may be associated with agricultural, manufactured or industrial goods. Non-agricultural products, which typically qualify for GI protection include handicrafts, jewellery, textiles, etc. (WTO, 2004). Given India’s historically vibrant and famous craft traditions, a number of craft genres and products from the crafts sector qualify as GI goods. If harnessed properly, trade gains from enhanced sale of these GI goods could provide tremendous socio-economic benefits to the producers of such goods. India, in compliance with the TRIPS Agreement of the WTO, enacted ‘The Geographical Indications of Goods (Registration and Protection) Act, (GI Act) on 15th September 2003 to provide protection to the goods registered under the Act. Seven years down the line, evidence from the ground suggests that while there ...


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