The European Commission 2019 report on North Macedonia on Intellectual property law

The usual summary of the European commision report on Intellectual property in North Macedonia.
intellectual property
north macedonia



May 29, 2019

As is tradition on this site below is the segment from the European Commission 2019 report on North Macedonia on Intellectual property law. It feels like more-or-less the same text as in previous years.

Chapter 7: Intellectual property law

The EU has harmonised rules for the legal protection of intellectual property rights (IPR), and for the legal protection of copyright and related rights. Rules for the legal protection of IPRs cover for instance, patents and trademarks, designs, biotechnological inventions and pharmaceuticals. Rules for the legal protection of copyright and related rights cover, for instance, books, films, computer programmes and broadcasting.

The country remains moderately prepared in this area. Some progress was made in raising awareness about counterfeiting and its threats to health. In the coming year, the country should in particular continue to:

  • increase the number of investigations and infringements of intellectual property particularly in the area of industrial property, with a focus on the misuse of trademarks;

  • improve the legal framework on intellectual property, notably the collective rights management system by aligning with the Collective Rights Management Directive and the industrial property rights by aligning with the Enforcement Directive and with the Trade Secrets Directive;

  • establish an information platform for law enforcement institutions to exchange data on IPRs.

Amendments to the legal framework on copyright and neighbouring rights have been delayed. The authors’ rights are safeguarded by the single licensed collective management organisation. The current legal framework allows for parallel organisations to collect fees from authors, but without a licence. The unit responsible in the Ministry was upgraded but staffing remained low, with only four members of staff dealing with this issue. Weak capacity leads to weak cooperation, both with national and international counterparts.

For industrial property rights, the State Office for Industrial Property continued its strategic cooperation with the European Patent Office, the World Intellectual Property Office and the European Union Intellectual Property Office. This cooperation focuses on raising awareness about counterfeit goods, rather than best practices on enforcement of IPRs. The provision of good quality services to the business community remains a challenge.

The crucial activities planned under the 2016-2018 strategy on industrial property rights were not implemented, including the setting-up of an information platform to exchange IPR-related data among law enforcement institutions. This prevents the establishment of a credible enforcement record and of reliable statistics on institutional handling of IPR-infringements. The Coordination Body for Intellectual Property lacks political support in its efforts to fight counterfeit and piracy and protect right-holders rights. The government did not replace its former ex-officio members.