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Rural Development Programme

Promoting Geographic Indication “Typical Products in Matrouh” Initiated by an Introductory Seminar

March 16, 2017

Under the framework of EU-JRDP Programme and in coordination with the Programme Lead Partner, the Egyptian Ministry of Agriculture and Land Reclamation (MALR), Foreign Affairs Relations (FAR) Office, a Seminar on Geographic Indication (GI), a Tool for Promoting Typical Products in Matrouh Governorate was held today Wednesday 15th of March, 2017.

The Seminar aimed at presenting the GI concept and potentialities for national stakeholders. The event opened with a key speech from Dr. David Stephane, Project Manager from the European Union, Delegation to the Arab Republic of Egypt, Dr. Hesham Allam, Foreign Affairs Relations (FAR – MALR), and Dr. Mario Margiotta, Team Leader of EU- JRDP. Following opening remarks, the International Consultant Dr. Monique Bagal has delivered presentations on what is GI, their potential in Egypt, and the needs assessment methodology of GI in Egypt within the EU-JRDP framework.

The Seminar was then concluded with open discussion from the approximately 40 participants who ranged from the Egyptian Organization for Standardization and Quality, the Egyptian Ministry of Water Resources and Irrigation (MWRI), The Egyptian Environmental Affairs Agency (EEAA), the Egyptian Administration for Agricultural Cooperatives, Horticulture Research Institute, Faculty of Agriculture, Cairo University, UNIDO, FAO, CIHEAM BARI, Animal Production Research Center (APRI), Agricultural Research Center, Desert Research Center (DRC), Deputy of the Farmers’ Union, Slow Food Egypt. Participants were expected to fill in a questionnaire upon which the Programme will build on for designing a tailor-made strategy for the implementation of geographical indications in Marsa Matrouh and creating a local inter-institutional Working Group on GI.

It is noteworthy to highlight that the EU-JRDP is investing € 1.2 M in the Egyptian Governorate of Matrouh (2016-2019) to promote Geographic Indication (GI) products, mainly from the sectors of agriculture and livestock. Geographical Indication (GI) is a distinctive sign used to identify a product as originating in the territory of a country, region or locality where its quality, reputation or other characteristic is linked to its geographical origin. The protection of geographical indications matters economically and culturally. EU–JRDP approach in enhancing GIs aims at identifying products that are deeply rooted in tradition, culture and territory with high potential of GI designation; protecting (Intellectual Property Right) local products name to create value added to the benefit of local communities; promoting local products, to seize existing market opportunities.

About the GI Consultant:

Dr. Monique Bagal has a Master’s Degree in International Law and a PhD in the protection of GIs. She has extensive experience in the past years in GI field, with a specialization in Africa – including North Africa. She was GI legal expert consultant for FAO, REDD and WIPO and the International network for GIs (ORIGIN). She has also collaborated in the field of GIs with the African organization for IP (OAPI) and the African Union.

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