The Council of the European Union made a decision on July 20 local time authorizing the formal signing of the China-EU Geographical Indications Agreement, the first significant bilateral trade agreement signed between the EU and China. The first phase will ensure that 100 geographical indications from each side will be protected in the other's market.
Image from: Netease Wine Aroma
The so-called geographical indication is used to identify whether the goods originate from a certain place and whether there is counterfeiting. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs commented that this is the first comprehensive and high-level bilateral agreement on geographical indications negotiated by China, and the first major trade agreement between China and Europe in recent years, which is a milestone for deepening China-EU economic and trade cooperation.
Last November, at the beginning of his second visit to China, French President Emmanuel Macron told the media that the EU and China would sign a long-awaited agreement on Protected Designation of Origin (PGI) on the 6th, which would better protect European agricultural products from entering the Chinese market.
After nearly eight months, now finally signed the agreement and clearly listed the first phase of China"s 100 geographical indications, you can see that tea occupies most of them, Anji white tea, Anxi Tieguanyin, Liu'an Guaqi, Pu'er tea and a total of 22 teas with geographical indications on the list. The second largest category is fruits, rice and other agricultural products. In addition, we are pleased to see a total of 11 geographical indications for liquor appear on the list, including Guizhou Moutai wine, Wuliangye, Jiannanchun wine, Gaofujia wine, Wrenching well wine, Helanshan Donglu wine, Renheng Bing wine, Yantai wine, Shacheng wine, Shaoxing wine and Huishui black glutinous rice wine.
After the signing of the China-Europe Geographical Indication Agreement, first of all, it will effectively strengthen the legal protection of Chinese characteristic geographical indications in the European market, safeguard the interests of Chinese characteristic products in the European market, and protect the legitimate rights and benefits of domestic enterprises and farmers. In turn, if the products of Chinese geographical indications can open the European market, the new demand of the new market will also stimulate the upgrading of the domestic related industries.
In recent years, the Chinese wine industry has attached great importance to the construction of appellation of origin, and appellations such as Yantai, Shacheng, the eastern foot of Helan Mountain, Changli and Renheng have made great efforts in appellation of origin. And liquor is also learning from the construction of wine appellations, but compared to foreign countries such as Champagne and Cognac, which have gained legal recognition for the concept of large appellations, our geographical indications are currently still at the stage of origin and a certain product. While China's geographical indications are protected in Europe, they should also learn from each other's systematic construction and legal protection of appellations.
On the other hand, the first batch of EU-protected wines, especially baijiu GI, have a catalytic role in both enhancing the status of Chinese wines and promoting the internationalization of baijiu.
With the signing and implementation of the agreement, people on both sides can enjoy these special quality landmark products as early as possible, meeting the demand of Chinese and European consumers for high-grade quality products and bringing new benefits to consumers on both sides.
The announcement also said that four years after the agreement comes into force, the list of protection will increase to 275 geographical indication names. At that time, it is hoped that more Chinese wine GIs will appear.