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Since Venezuela’s withdrawal from the Andean Community in 2006, there has been much uncertainty about the validity of the decisions concerning IP, and whether these would still be applied. Matías Pérez-Irazábal investigates.
In Venezuela, as in other jurisdictions, the granting of exclusive rights over IP assets is subject to their use within the country, and IP licences have been the best instruments to justify the granting of those exclusive rights.
During the 1970s, Venezuela joined the Andean Pact, incorporating the common treatment regimen for foreign capital known as the Andean Subregional Integration Agreement (Cartagena Agreement). As a result, in accordance with Article 43 (Decree No. 2095) dated February 12, 1992, which regulates the Regime for the Common Treatment of Foreign Capital and Trademarks, Patents, Licensing Agreements and Royalties (based on Decision 291 of the Andean Pact), the contracts for licensing trademarks that belong to a foreign company are subject to registration at the Venezuelan Superintendencia de Inversiones Extranjeras (SIEX).
In addition, as established in the same article, the main consequence of not registering this kind of contract at the SIEX is that the patent and trademark office (SAPI) would not proceed with the registration of the licensees as rightful trademark users in Venezuela.
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IP licensing; SAPI; SIEX; patents; trademarks