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6 Korean items added to global trademark list 2022-05-12
Six Korean items will be added to a global list of official trademarks. They are Hanbok (traditional clothing), soju (distilled alcoholic beverage), gochujang (red pepper paste) doenjang (soybean paste), makgeolli (rice wine) and gimbap (seaweed rice roll).

The Korean Intellectual Property Office (KIPO) on May 9 said the six items will be added to the Nice classification system of the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO).

The system lists trademarks of products and services recognized by WIPO used by 91 member countries as of last month. Nice-classified items can be registered as trademarks overseas.

At a WIPO experts' meeting from April 25-28, KIPO initially proposed the addition of 10 Korean items to the classification and got the six approved.

Thus nine Korean items are on the Nice list. Kimchi was the first to be added in 2005, followed by bulgogi (marinated grilled beef) in 2015 and bibimbap (rice with meat, vegetables) in 2016.

When a Korean product is added to the classification, it has a lower possibility of being filed for a trademark abroad. Even if the item is registered, this can be nullified by the classification.

Mok Seong-ho, director of KIPO's Trademark and Design Examination Bureau, said, "The registration of Korean products (on the trademark list) reflects our country's higher status thanks to (the popularity of) Korean culture."


By Yoo Yeon Gyeong and Yoon Sojung

[Source: KOREA.net, Culture, May 10, 2022]
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