In the Official Journal no. 65 of 12 March 2020, the Decree 15 January 2020 of the Italian Ministry of Economic Development (MISE) was published, issued pursuant to the Law Decree no 34/2019.  With this decree the MISE set out criteria and methods for assigning incentives aimed at supporting “Made in Italy” goods, through the international promotion of Italian collective and certification trademarks. With a subsequent circular, the director-general of the Italian Patent and Trademark Office (IPTO) will define the specific operating procedures for the granting of these incentives, including controls, sanctions and revocation.

The MISE Decree firstly identifies the beneficiaries of the incentives, being the associations representing manufacturing companies. These beneficiaries, pursuant to Article 3 of the Decree, can receive support of up to 70%, and in any case not exceeding 70.000 EUR, of the costs incurred in conducting the following activities  aimed at the international promotion of Italian collective and certification trademarks:

  • participation in trade fairs and international exhibitions;
  • participation in side-events at international trade fairs;
  • bilateral meetings with foreign associations;
  • seminars in Italy and abroad with foreign operators;
  • international market communications, also through large supermarket chains (GDO) and online channels.

In addition, Article 3 specifies that an application for these incentives may be submitted if the recipient has filed, after the date of the Decree’s publication, an application for the registration of a collective trademark or a certification trademark pursuant to Articles 11 and 11 bis of the Legislative Decree No 30/2005 (Italian IP Code), or an application for the conversion of a previously registered collective trademark pursuant to Article 33 of the Legislative Decree No. 15/2019. In any case, payment of the incentive is subject to the acceptance of the application for registration or conversion.

The following costs are eligible as part of the above-mentioned activities (Article 4):

  • participation fees, rental and preparation of stands at fairs and international exhibitions in Italy and abroad;
  • rental and preparation of temporary exhibition areas;
  • interpretation services, translation services, equipment rental;
  • brochures, catalogues, informative materials, TV and radio commercials, advertising on websites or international magazines related to the trademark at issue;
  • expenses for demonstration of the associations’ production methods, carried out during the above-mentioned activities;
  • room rental for training activities, bilateral meetings and/or seminars.

Furthermore, Article 5 specifies the content of the collective and certification trademarks’ regulation of use, which shall contain, among others, information on the applicant, the characteristics of the goods or services bearing the mark, the persons authorised to use the mark, as well as the conditions governing the use of the mark, including sanctions in the case of infringement of the regulation.

 

Finally, the decree specifies the “Unione italiana delle Camere di Commercio, Industria, Artigianato e Agricoltura – Unioncamere” as the body responsible for the management of the incentives. The relationship between Unioncamere and the IPTO will be settled by a special agreement.