Trademark Rights Give Way to Free Competition

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Principled decision concerning the scope of 3D trademark protection ensures cheap gas for the consumers

On 14 July 2011, the Court of Justice of the European Union passed a judgment establishing that given certain assumptions, considerations for the consumer and for free competition take precedence over the protection rules concerning trademark rights.

The case deals with the question of whether Viking Gas A/S (Viking Gas) has infringed the exclusive licensee’s, Kosan Gas A/S, formerly BP Gas A/S (Kosan A/S), trademark rights when filling gas into a gas bottle protected as a 3D mark and selling it.

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