危地马拉知识产权概况

总第68期 China IP Magazine发表,[专利]文章

  2006年5月,危地马拉通过法律途径加强了对知识产权保护的法律体系。尽管危地马拉正在通过一些努力推进本国知识产权保护的现代化进程,但对于知识产权的保护仍然不够。

  专利

  危地马拉《专利法》对专利提供了20年的有效保护,(食品、饮品、药品以及农用化学品为10年),广泛强制许可的规定以及缺乏防止平行进口的保护。而且在若干学科领域不可以申请专利,其中包括数学方法、活生物体、商业计划和化学化合物或成分。根据世界贸易组织在《与贸易有关知识产权方面的协议》(TRIPs),从1995年开始危地马拉为药品和农业化学产品建立了一个专利“信箱”。此外,危地马拉没有为属于“信箱”的申请的制药和农产品提供独占销售权,这不符合有关的知识产权协定。要获得专利权,一项发明必须是新颖的、有创新性且适合于工业应用。专利注册最长有效期限为15年。

  商标

  在危地马拉的商标保护是通过在经济部的专利商标办公室登记而获得的。授予的保护期限为10年,到期之后可续展。由于独占使用权被授予最先申请人,危地马拉的法律对于著名商标持有人的保护不足。这使得第三方可注册和使用(或阻止真正的商标持有人使用)国际驰名商标

  版权

  1998年,一部关于版权和其他权利的法案生效,2000年又经过修订。此前,危地马拉法律没有明确保护计算机软件条款,只有1992年制定的一部法律授权联邦管理实体负责监督本地有线电视运营商履行知识产权国际保护的义务。不过,迄今为止,并没有实际采取行动,而且该实体也尚未建立。在1994年,根据危地马拉有线电视经营者和美国影业出口商协会(MPEAA)之间达成的协议,美国影业出口商协会撤回其指称持续侵犯版权和盗版的卫星信号的普遍优惠制(普惠制)的请求。1995年10月,美国电影协会(MPA,MPEAA的继任者)指出有线电视公司违反这些协定,从而废除1994年的协议,并指示各有线运营商停止传送美国电影协会会员公司的信号。一些有线公司未予理会该请求并继续使用盗版信号,同时他们谋求与信号提供商重新开始谈判。

  1995年由国际知识产权联盟编写的一份报告估计,在危地马拉,由于侵犯版权,对美国公司每年造成970万美元的损失。

  在危地马拉,虽然版权产业继续面临大量盗版,自从为知识产权犯罪设立特别检察官办公室后,保护知识产权执法有了较大提高。不幸的是,最近通过的立法改革大大降低刑事处罚,并全面取消民事侵权中法定损害赔偿的规定。在危地马拉,政府层面的软件盗版问题依然严重。2000年9月,修订版《危地马拉著作权法》获得通过,并在2000年11月1日开始生效。该法恢复了对于侵犯著作权犯罪的“公共”起诉,这一问题已成为近几年版权业的首要议程。

  根据《著作权法修正案》,危地马拉设立了专门针对知识产权犯罪的特别检察官办公室,这有助于在实践中提高危地马拉的版权执法力度。然而,该特别检察官办公室负担重而且人员不足,目前最少需要三至四个星期取得搜查和逮捕令以搜查涉嫌著作权侵权。盗版现象仍然严重。举例来说,在危地马拉,商业软件盗版的比率约为75%,是拉丁美洲比例最高的国家之一。虽然危地马拉是朝着正确的方向发展,但为履行其多边和双边知识产权的义务,仍有很多工作要做。国际知识产权联盟(IIPA)建议美国贸易代表继续将危地马拉放在特别301条款观察名单上。

  In May 2006, Guatemala strengthened its legal framework for the protection of intellectual property rights with the passage of laws. Although Guatemala is making some efforts to modernize its IPR regime, its protection of intellectual property remains inadequate.

  Patent

  Guatemala's Patent protection is valid for a maximum period of twenty years (ten years for food, beverages, medicines, and agrochemicals). There are lots of compulsory licensing provisions, and lack of protection against parallel imports. A number of subject areas are not patentable, including mathematical methods, living organisms, commercial plans, and chemical compounds or compositions. Under the WTO Agreement on Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPs), Guatemala established a patent "mailbox" for pharmaceutical and agricultural chemical products since January, 1995. In addition, Guatemala does not provide exclusive marketing rights for pharmaceutical and agricultural products, which are subject to "mailbox" applications, as required by the TRIPs Agreement. To be eligible for a patent, an invention must be new, innovative, and be suitable for industrial application. Patent registration is valid for a maximum period of fifteen years.

  Trademark

  Trademark protection in Guatemala is acquired through registration with the Patent and Trademark Office of the Ministry of Economics. It is granted for a ten-year period after which it may be renewed. Guatemala's law provides insufficient protection for owners of well-known trademarks, since the right to exclusive use is granted to the first to file. This has permitted third parties to register and use (or prevent the genuine trademark holder from using) internationally well known trademarks.

  Copyright

  The copyright and other relevant acts came into effect in 1998. They were amended in 2000. Guatemalan law does not expressly protect computer software before. A 1992 law authorized a federal regulatory entity to enforce the international IPR obligations of local cable television operators. To date, however, no implementing action has been taken and the entity has not been established. In 1994, on the basis of agreements between Guatemalan cable television operators and the Motion Picture Exporters Association of America (MPEAA), the MPEAA withdrew its Generalized System of Preferences (GSP) petition alleging persistent copyright infringement and piracy of satellite signals. In October 1995, citing violations of those agreements by cable companies, the MPA (successor to the MPEAA) voided the 1994 agreements and instructed cable operators to cease transmission of MPA member companies' signals. A number of cable companies ignored the demand and continued pirating the signals while they sought to reopen negotiations with the signal providers.

  A report prepared in 1995 by the International Intellectual Property Alliance estimated that losses in Guatemala due to copyright infringements cost U.S. firms $9.7 million annually.

  Although the copyright industries continue to confront high piracy levels in Guatemala, IPR enforcement has improved considerably since the creation of the Special Prosecutor's Office for intellectual property crimes. Unfortunately, legislative reform recently passed with substantially decreased criminal penalties and removed a statutory damages provision for civil copyright infringement in its entirety. Software piracy at the government level still remains a serious problem in Guatemala. In September 2000, amendments to the Guatemala copyright law were adopted, and entered into effect on November 1, 2000. This law reinstated the "public" prosecution of copyright crimes, an issue that had been at the top of the copyright industry's agenda for years.

  The Special Prosecutor's Office for intellectual property crimes recently created by the copyright law amendments has helped to improve copyright enforcement in practice in Guatemala. This Special Prosecutor's Office, however, is overburdened and understaffed; it currently takes at least three to four weeks to obtain a search and seizure order to raid a suspected copyright infringer. Copyright piracy levels remain high. For example, the level of business software piracy in Guatemala is 75%, one of the highest in Latin America. Although Guatemala is moving in the right direction, there is still much work to do to meet its multilateral and bilateral intellectual property rights obligations. IIPA recommends that USTR keep Guatemala on the Special 301 Watch List.

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据悉,正在修订中的《专利法》四修,拟将恶意侵权专利赔偿额度从原有的最高三倍上限调整到最高五倍,五倍赔偿已经是目前世界上最高的赔偿额度,对此,你有什么看法?

没有考虑过
合理,打击侵权,确有必要
不合理,赔偿过高,国际上并无先例