ECTA Conference review


More than 800 delegates flocked to Sicily for ECTA’s 31st annual conference, as WIPR reports.

Attorneys, practitioners and in-house counsel from across the world attended the three-day European Communities Trade Mark Association’s (ECTA) conference in Palermo, the island’s main city.

Counterfeiting in China—a hot topic for trademark owners—was the subject of the opening day’s only public session: Filing and Enforcement Strategies in China. Pedro Velasco Martins, deputy head of intellectual property and public procurement at the European Commission (EC), explained that in 2010, 85 percent of counterfeit goods seized within European borders came from China—a “sobering” figure.

Martins handed over to Horace Lam, partner at law firm Jones Day in Beijing, who joked about the many “horror” stories he could tell about counterfeiting in China. Lam urged attendees to understand the country’s filing system, which is ‘first-to-file’ and has no use requirement. “The lesson to learn is that if you don’t give yourself a trademark in China, someone will give you one,” he said, provoking laughter and applause in the audience.

ECTA Conference, review, Sicily