The final conference of the EU twinning project “Protection and Enforcement of Intellectual Property Rights in Serbia” was held in the building of the National Assembly, st. Kralja Milana 14, in Belgrade, on December 8th, 2021, starting at 11 am. 

Mr. Uroš Kandić, state secretary in the Ministry of Trade, Tourism and Telecommunication gave a welcome speech together with Mr. Martin Klaucke, Head of Operations Section II, EU Delegation to the Republic of Serbia; Ms. Lidija Stojanović, Assistant Minister, Ministry of Trade, Tourism and Telecommunications; Her Excellency the Ambassador of Denmark to Serbia, Ms. Susanne Shine; Ms. Anne-Kristin Piplica, Head of the Economic Sector, Embassy of the Federal Republic of Germany and Mr. John Jensen, Danish Patent and Trademark Office. 

Mr. Uroš Kandić pointed out that this project helped Serbia improve the capacities of the competent authorities in the field of implementation of Intellectual Property Rights, including Market Inspection Sector in the Ministry of Trade, Tourism and Telecommunications as one of the active bodies in this field. He continued that the level of cooperation between the competent authorities has also been improved and the work of the coordination body has been supported, and IT tools have been developed as mechanisms that will further contribute to more efficient work, information exchange and effective cooperation. This will also enable economic entities to achieve the protection of intellectual property rights as an incentive for economic development, investment and as a contribution to consumer protection and public health. 

Her Excellency the Ambassador of Denmark to Serbia, Ms. Susanne Shine provided her comments on the project, saying that EU’s engagement in the Western Balkans is crucial, and they stand by the long-term European perspective for Serbia, as well as for the other countries of the Western Balkans; Serbia has a credible enlargement perspective, and shows great ability to assume the obligations of membership.

The magnitude and effects of counterfeiting and piracy are of such significance that they compel strong and sustained action from governments, business and consumers. More efficient protection and enforcement of intellectual property rights is critical in this regard, as is the need to build public support to fight against counterfeiting and piracy. 

During the implementation of the Twinning project, joint efforts and strong cooporation to increase the institutional capacities amongst relevant Serbian authorities were successfully implemented. The project focused on strengthening the protection and the enforcement of intellectual property rights for consumers and right holders. The overall aim was to support the Republic of Serbia in aligning the standards and legal framework and to implement EU Best Practice in order to effectively conduct accession negotiations and successfully manage overall EU integration and pre-accession assistance. 

The Project provided further legal alignment of national legislation with the EU, trainings for relevant institutions, as well as initiatives to raise public awareness of the importance of Intellectual Property Rights to the Republic of Serbia.  

The project was implemented by the Danish Patent and Trademark Office, Deutsche Stiftung für Internationale Rechtliche Zusammen arbeite.v in cooperation with the Ministry of Trade, Tourism and Telecommunications of Serbia. The project was financed by the European Union with a budget of EUR 1.500,000. 

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