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 Press Release
EU COMMISSION SUPPORTS GUARDSHIP


GUARDSHIP, THE EUROPEAN SHIPBUILDING INDUSTRY’S INITIATIVE FOR BETTER PROTECION INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY HAS RECEIVED STRONG BACKING FOR THE EUROPEAN COMMISSION.

Vice President G√ľnther Verheugen, Commissioner for Enterprise & Industry stated:

“In our joint initiative LeaderSHIP 2015, better protection of intellectual property rights in the shipbuilding sector was identified as a key element in our efforts to secure a prosperous and long term future for European shipyards.

The area of intellectual property rights is of particular importance for the shipbuilding sector given that the international reputation and unrivalled expertise of Europe's shipbuilders depends primarily upon their ability to develop and offer highly innovative and technologically complex products.  I am therefore particularly pleased that the European shipbuilding industry itself has taken with the GuardSHIP initiative, decisive action and once again demonstrated its ability, collectively at the European level, to come up with new ways of solving complex problems.

I am confident that the companies will greatly benefit from the services developed under GuardSHIP and can assure the shipbuilding community that the European Commission fully supports your endeavors to protect your industry from the unauthorized use of the intellectual property which is developed as the result of your significant investments in research and technological development and your innovative capacity and is so crucial to your long-term prosperity.”

GuardSHIP deeply appreciates this strong commitment. Public recognition will play an important role as violation of intellectual property rights is still often regarded as a peccadillo. GuardSHIP intends to bring misconduct to public attention in an effort to raise awareness. The support of the European Commission will help to address such cases also with the public authorities of violators’ countries.
 

Background information:

GuardSHIP is a European shipbuilding intellectual property right (IPR) collective management organization aiming to provide practical and cost efficient services with the purpose to jointly defend the interests of the European shipbuilding and related industries in terms of safeguarding its knowledge assets and IPR and solve shipbuilding specific IP protection problems.

Competing in the global market, ignorance about these knowledge assets, own ones as well as those of others is dangerous. The cost of such mistakes can be large and can vitally undermine the market position. By understanding, identifying, evaluating, managing and developing their knowledge assets, yards can fully exploit the benefit of their intellectual capital and strengthen their competitiveness.
            
The GuardSHIP services are provided by a small in-house team of experts, with a strong industry backing. In addition, GuardSHIP sources complementing expertise through a close network of specialized firms active in IPR relevant areas such as internationally renowned law firms HOWREY LLP and ZHONGLUN JINTONG. 

Since its establishment in August 2008, GuardSHIP has already published the first ever shipbuilding specific IP practice handbook. Further service offers are gradually being developed including: assisting companies in developing their specific company IP policy; conducting tailor made IP auditing and training programs, providing initial legal support mainly for SMEs; conducting patent brokerage; organizing joint market intelligence.




Brussels, 19 September 2008



For further information please contact: Ms Jing SHEN
Tel +32 282 0355, or e-mail to guardship@cesa.eu