Geographical indications and the South Africa–European Union free trade agreement

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Abstract

Geographical indications, as a form of intellectual property, are becoming increasingly important in global trade. In South Africa’s trade and cooperation agreement with the European Union, problems over the use of names such as ‘port’ and ‘sherry’ provided an important obstacle to the conclusion of the trade deal. This paper argues that the conflict over geographical indications in this trade agreement must be seen in the context of broader initiatives to establish a system of protecting this form of intellectual property through the World Trade Organisation.

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