The Scottish Government demands clarification on GIs

The Scottish Parliament

EU’s chief negotiator Michel Barnier said in an article published yesterday that the protection of geographical indications (GI) is still an outstanding issue and needs to be agreed.

The Scottish Government has now, again, demanded the UK Government to clarify its position on GIs, the UK Government has earlier indicated it wants to establish its own sets of rules on GIs. Of course, this indicates it may not fully align with the current, EU, legislation on the area and the Scottish Government fears the UK Government may use the GIs as a bargaining chip in a future trade deal with the US and also possibly with other non-EU states.

The issue at hand is the earlier proposed UK GI register only dealt with domestical GIs, not GIs from other countries. However, the latest White Paper made it clear the UK GI will be open for applications from outside the UK but it doesn’t state it will right from the start acknowledge traditionally protected GIs for EU products like champagne and parmesan.

The Scotch Whisky Association firmly believes in and supports the UK Government should establish a UK GI register in domestic law to ensure GI protection will be continued and upheld after Brexit.

Ministers of the Scottish Government is now pushing again for a clarification since they are convinced having a UK GI register in domestic law only protecting and acknowledging UK products may not be the best idea.

After Brexit, why should France acknowledge Scotch, if the UK doesn’t acknowledge champagne?

Geographical Indication
A Geographical Indication, GI, is a protection stopping producers outside the traditional manufacturing area of the product to sell and marketing products as being from a protected area. The examples usually given are Scotch whisky and champagne.

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