Ghana has joined the Geneva Act of WIPO’s Lisbon Agreement on Appellation of Origin and Geographical Indications.           

The Attorney-General and Minister for Justice, Hon. Godfred Yeboah Dame who entered the accession with the Director General of the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO), Daren Tang deposited the Instrument of Accession to the Geneva Act of the Lisbon Agreement on Appellations of Origin and Geographical Indications (“Geneva Act”) on November 3, 2021.
The Geneva Act of the Lisbon Agreement will come into force, with respect to Ghana, on February 3, 2022.   

The accession will allow Ghana to protect its geographical indications under the Geneva Act, such as its emblematic “Bolga baskets”, its traditional “Dzomi red palm oil”, or the fine quality of “Ghana shea butter” and “Ghana cocoa”, to name only a few.
The Geneva Act, which came into force on February 26, 2020, provides producers of quality products linked to origin, with faster and cheaper access to the international protection of their products’ distinctive designations. It further develops the legal framework of the Lisbon System, which helps promote many globally marketed products such as, for example, BANANO DE COSTA RICA, CHAMPAGNE, TOSCANO (Olive Oil), or BOHEMIA CRYSTAL.

The Geneva Act, which will cover 35 countries with Ghana, is designed to help ensure that producers of quality products linked to origin are able to protect the distinctive designations of their products in multiple jurisdictions, either as appellations of origin or geographical indications, through a single application with WIPO and the payment of one set of fees.

The Geneva Act, concluded in 2015, and the Lisbon Agreement, concluded in 1958, constitute together the “Lisbon System” for the international registration and protection of appellations of origin and geographical indications. The Lisbon System, which will cover 56 countries with Ghana, provides protection for names that identify the geographic origin of products such as coffee, tea, fruits, cheese, wine, pottery, glass and cloth.
Examples of appellations of origin and geographical indications include KAMPOT PEPPER (Cambodia), COMTÉ (France), TOKAJ (Hungary), SAROUGH HANDMADE CARPET (Iran), TEQUILA (Mexico), PORTO (Portugal), CHULUCANAS (Peru) and FIGUE DE DJEBBA (Tunisia).

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