Geographical Indications in Japan - a New Start

10 Pages Posted: 19 Nov 2015

See all articles by Steven Van Uytsel

Steven Van Uytsel

Kyushu University - Graduate School of Law

Date Written: November 18, 2015


The Diet, the Japanese parliament, has adopted in 2014 the Tokutei Norin Suisan Butsu to no Meisho no Hogo ni Kansuru Horitsu (Act for the Protection of the Names of Designated Agricultural, Forestry and Fishery Products and Foodstuffs). Even though the title of the act does not carry the word ‘chiriteki hyouji’(地理的表示, geographical indications), it is generally considered ‘the’ geographical indication act (hereinafter GI Act) in Japan.

The purpose of this paper is to introduce the main provision of this act in the English language. The structure of this paper is as follows. Section II will describe the scope of the legislation. In Section III, the registration process will be elaborated. Section IV deals with the reasons to refuse an application for a geographical indication. In Section V, the procedure to amend a registration will be explained. Section VI elaborates the procedure to cancel a registration. The enforcement procedure and the fines applicable will be explained in Section VII.

Keywords: geographical indication, Japan

Suggested Citation

Van Uytsel, Steven, Geographical Indications in Japan - a New Start (November 18, 2015). Available at SSRN: or

Steven Van Uytsel (Contact Author)

Kyushu University - Graduate School of Law ( email )

6-19-1 Hakozaki,

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