Weblog KPAG Kosmidis & Partner – die deutschsprachige Anwaltskanzlei in Griechenland

Griechisch-chinesische Wirtschaftsvereinigung zur Förderung von Investitionen gegründet

Publiziert am 13.Dezember.2016 von Abraam Kosmidis

gr-cnGriechisch-Chinesische Vereinigung zur Förderung von Investitionen mit Sitz in Thessaloniki

Zur institutionellen Förderung des hohen Investitionsinteresses Chinas am griechischen Markt als auch des Potenzial für gemeinsame Investitionen wird durch die Gründung der in Thessaloniki ansässigen griechisch-chinesischen Vereinigung (EKEPES) zur Förderung von Investitionen und Kooperationen Rechnung getragen.

Im Rahmen der ersten, öffentlichen Veranstaltung der Vereinigung erfolgten auch B2B-Treffen zwischen zahlreichen Unternehmen. Den Aussagen des Vize–Präsidenten der Vereinigung, Herrn Dimitris Samaras zufolge, nimmt Griechenland eine zentrale Rolle in der Investitionsplanung Chinas ein und umgekehrt bestehen ausgezeichnete Aussichten für griechische Unternehmen, auf dem chinesischen Markt aktiv zu werden und mit chinesischen Partnern Investitionen in Griechenland zu tätigen.

Außer dem Interesse für Investitionsvorhaben an Häfen und Flughäfen, interessieren sich die Chinesen auch für den Tourismussektor. Dabei sind sowohl Investitionen in neuen als auch in bestehenden Anlagen von Interesse, während sich hohe Chancen für griechische Produkte, wie Olivenprodukte, Wein und weitere landwirtschaftliche Produkte abzeichnet.

Mit dem wirtschaftlichen Aspekt zielt die EKEPES-Vereinigung zugleich auch auf die Förderung anderer Kooperationen. Herr Samaras erklärte, dass China ein enormes Programm für den Kulturbereich plant, in welchem Griechenland eine herausragende Stelle wegen seines Erbes der Antike einnimmt, welches in China höchsten Respekt genießt. Darüber hinaus finden auch Diskussionen zu Bildungsthemen statt, mit Teilnahmen von chinesischen Studenten an griechischen Ausbildungseinrichtungen auf Hochschulniveau, wie z.B. Masterstudiengänge.

Rechtsinformationen über Griechenland auf chinesisch finden Sie unter www.greece-lawyer.cn



Starting up a business in Greece within a day

Publiziert am 28.Februar.2014 von Abraam Kosmidis

On Monday, 17th February 2014, the Greek Minister of Development, Mr Xatzidakis, gave a press-conference, where he presented a draft of a new investment law which will change radically the methodology followed in order to start up a new business in Greece. It aims to reduce the time required to begin a new business up to a single day. It will allow all businesses to operate without any severe public sector interference and simplifies the required procedure to get a start-up license.

This law is considered to be one of the most important laws that the Greek government has issued, during the last 18 months, that’s why it was so important for the Greek Prime minister, Mr Samaras to be present and attend this specific press-conference. He said that this law is a very significant weapon, used to boost the Greek Economy and to reduce the “monster” of bureaucracy.
What the investment law will include

The final format of the law will not be finalized prior to its voting process by the Greek parliament, by the end of April. However, the basic core of this new law is as follows:

  •  The law is applicable to every business sector.
  • An entrepreneur wishing to begin a business in Greece, he/she can fill in an application in the web-portal (which will be created soon enough), where he/she can upload all the necessary documentation. In most cases – for example such as general shopping stores, the entrepreneur will get the license to start operating his business within a day. In addition there are some other cases regarding businesses with environmental impact (e.g chemical industries, mines) where a license is required. The public authorities will provide for this license, before the businessmen apply on the web. The law will ensure that the steps required in order to obtain the license will be narrowed from 21 (steps required so far) to 7.
  • The procedure followed so far, demanded that the public authorities had to check over plenty of paper documentation before providing any operation license. From now on, this control will be done by some credited auditors – either belonging to the public or the private sector. It will take place during the operational lifetime of businesses. This means that the control of businesses will be more efficient and effective. The results of these controls will be upon the actual facts and data arising throughout the operational lifetime of a business.
  • The law will define that strict penalties will be imposed to any entrepreneur who is found (during the audits) to be law offender. The penalty may reach up to the level of three million Euros, or it may even mean that the business may close permanently.
  • The web-portal will allow everyone who wishes to start-up a business, not only to apply for an operation license, but furthermore, it will allow the businessmen to follow up the progress of their application. The ultimate target is to provide most of the operation licenses within a single day.
  • The law aims to simplify the procedure to establish and operate a Business Park. The public authorities will no longer interfere during the licensing process. The law aims that the Business Parks operate in a more organized and steady environment. The law encourages the establishment of new Business Parks and facilitates the operation of the existing ones.

 

The benefits of the investment law:

The Greek government aims to achieve some great advantages when this law is in force:

ü  The numbers of steps required to obtain an operation license will be reduced up to 60%. So far, the entrepreneur was obliged to collect documentation such as health and fire safety regulations as well as studies on environmental impacts. Many and different public authorities were involved to provide all these papers. They now become obsolete. The procedure only requires the entrepreneur to fill in an application.

ü  This automatically leads to reduction of bureaucratic constraint that the public authorities had to deal with. Since the interference between the entrepreneur and the public authorities is minimized, then the corruption phenomena are eliminated.

ü  The entrepreneur becomes more responsible to provide true data regarding the operation of his/her business. He /she is aware of the fact that any fake data may cause the business to shut down. He/she also feels that all the actions that the entrepreneur is responsible for will benefit his/her own business.

ü  Until now, there were not any clear and objective standards which would thoroughly describe the business licensing process. Every case for licensing a business was examined as separate case and not under the ‘umbrella’ of specific standards. As a result, there was a chance of misinterpretation of the law, unjustified time delays and eventually corruption seemed to be the only solution.

ü  The Greek business licensing procedure will conform to the EU and international practices, creating a business friendly environment in Greece.

More importantly, the long –term benefit of the application of this investment law, will be the enhancement of the business environment in the country. The government hopes that this law will create a safe business working framework that will appeal in the near future investors from abroad to invest in Greece.

The business world of Greece and from abroad is expecting this new law to be quickly enacted. It took several months of preparation and the cooperation of several ministries (such as the Ministry of Internal Affairs, the Ministry of Public Order, Ministry of Tourism, Ministry of Environment, etc), but the results are very hopeful. The entrepreneurship in Greece changes from its foundation. A new era for investments in Greece  begins.



Bundesfinanzminister Dr. Wolfgang Schäuble MdB unterstützt aktiv die Gründung einer Förderbank für Griechenland

Publiziert am 22.Juli.2013 von Abraam Kosmidis

Bei seinem Kurzbesuch in der griechischen Hauptstadt am 18.7.2013, hatte der deutsche Finanzminister, Dr. Wolfgang Schäuble, auch Pläne und finanzielle Mittel für den Aufbau einer Förderbank in Griechenland mitgebracht.  Die Bank soll, ähnlich dem deutschen Vorbild der KfW (Kreditanstalt für Wiederaufbau) Kredite, Fördermittel und Know- how für neue Investitionsvorhaben kleiner und mittelständischer Unternehmen (KMU) gewähren.

KfW

Nach Angaben soll sich die finanzielle Beteiligung Deutschlands an der Schaffung dieser Förderbank für Griechenland auf ca. 100 Mio. Euro belaufen.

Nach Angaben des griechischen Entwicklungsministeriums wird sich diese Förderbank nach der Europäischen Gesetzgebung richten. Einer der Hauptzwecke der Förderbank soll die Rentabilität und die Erzielung von Renditen für seine Aktionäre sein.

Der Fond soll durch drei verschiedenen Kapitalarten finanziert werden, ohne dabei zusätzliche Geldmittel von europäischen Ländern zu benötigen:

–       Kapital aus dem Strukturfonds der EU und aus dem Förderprogramm für öffentliche Investitionen

–       Eigenmittel, unmittelbare Finanzierungen oder Bürgschaften von Förderbanken wie z.B. der KfW, sowie von internationalen Investitionsbanken. Eine Beteiligung der Europäische Investitionsbank (EIB)  ist geplant.

–       Geldmittel von Privatinvestoren und örtlichen, oder internationalen Kreditinstituten

EIB

Damit soll die griechische Förderbank über insgesamt ca. 500 Mio. Euro verfügen und entsprechend Darlehen an kleine und mittelständische Unternehmen ausreichen. Die Massnahme wird als dringend notwendig erarchtet, nachdem die griechischen Banken aufgrund ihrer internen Probleme, Rekapitalisierungsbemühungen etc., den Markt nicht mit genügend Kapital bzw. Darlehen versorgen können.

Laut Informationen sind in den letzten zwei Monaten außer den Kontaktaufnahmen des griechischen Ministerpräsidenten und der Wirtschafts-und Entwicklungsminister Präsentationen bezüglich der Hauptmerkmale der Förderbank sowohl bei der deutschen Bank KfW, als auch bei den beiden europäischen Bankinstituten ETE und EIF erfolgt. Zugleich finden weiterhin Kontaktaufnahmen mit griechischen und internationalen Investitionsträgern statt, damit sich diese an der geplanten Förderbank beteiligen.

Der entscheidende Punkt für die Erzielung dieser Vereinbarung sollen die Verhandlungen auf politischer Ebene mit der deutschen Seite sein, die während der letzten Reise des Wirtschaftsministers, Herrn K. Chatzidakis, in Berlin stattgefunden haben. Bedeutende griechische Investoren, wie zB die Stiftungen „Onassis“ und „Niarchos“ , sollen laut Angaben des Wirtschafts-und Entwicklungsministeriums Kontakte mit dem Industrie-und Unternehmensverband (SEB) sowie mit dem griechischen Reederverband (EEE) zwecks Beteiligung an dem Vorhaben aufgenommen haben. Zudem soll auch seitens der Regierung von Khatar und des Verbands der Auslandsgriechen Interesse gezeigt worden.

Die Gründung der griechischen Förderbank soll bis Ende des Jahres abgeschlossen sein.

 



Immobilienverkäufe der griechischen Privatisierungsanstalt TAYPED griechischer Staat verkauft Hotels, Häfen, Mall

Publiziert am 4.Juni.2013 von Abraam Kosmidis

Immobilienverkäufe der griechischen Privatisierungsanstalt TAYPED

Im Rahmen der laufenden Privatisierungsverfahren in Griechenland veräußert die griechische Privatisierungsanstalt ΤΑΥΠΕΔ http://www.hradf.com/el aktuell u.a. verschiedene touristisch nutzbare Immobilien. Dabei sind Hotels, Naturhäfen, Campingplätze usw.

Verkauf des luxuriösen  Hotelkomplexes „Asteras Vouliagmenis“

Εine weitere Immobilie mit ausgezeichneten Nutzungsaussichten wird zum Verkauf angeboten. Es handelt sich um den berühmten Hotelkomplex „Asteras Vouliagmenis“, der sich in der wunderschönen Lage „Mikro Kavouri“ am edlen Küstenort „Vouliagmeni“ befindet.

asteras05

Die Immobilie weist eine Gesamtfläche von 119.800 qm auf, wovon 111.942 qm der ausschließlichen Nutzfläche entsprechen.  Die Entfernung bis zur Innenstadt von Athen beträgt nur 20 Kilometer, und 25 Kilometer bis zum Internationalen Flughafen von Athen.  Angrenzend zum „Asteras Vouliagmenis“ befinden sich ein weiterer Hotelkomplex, der „Astir Palace“, sowie der Yachthafen von Vouliagmeni. Diese Umgebung gehört zu einem der teuersten Wohngebiete Athens.

Die Immobilie ist zur Errichtung von Ferienhäusern, Hotelanlagen und Tourismuseinrichtungen auf der gesamten Immobilienfläche von „Asteras“ geeignet, und verfügt über traumhafte Strände und viele Grünflächen. TAYPED wird alle notwendigen Handlungen vornehmen, sodass die Nutzung und der Aufstieg der betreffenden Immobilie soweit wie möglich vereinfacht werden.

 Projekt „Ermioni“

Der kleine, wunderschöne Naturhafen „Ermioni“ befindet sich in der vorteilhaften Lage „Sabarisa“ des Küstendorfes „Thermisia“ in Argolida, Peloponnes. Diese wertvolle  Immobilie bietet eine einmalige Möglichkeit zur Errichtung eines erstklassigen Resorts und zum Bau von Ferienhäusern  in einem traumhaften Gebiet. 

Die Immobilie „Ermioni“, ein kleiner, wunderschöner Naturhafen, liegt  direkt  am Meer,  in der nutzbaren Lage „Sabarisa“ des Küstendorfs Thermisia in Argolida bei Peloponnes, weist eine unbebaute Gesamtfläche von 165.639 qm auf und wird durch eine Landstraße geteilt. 

In unmittelbarer Nähe befinden sich die bedeutendste, antike Kultstätte „Epidauros“ , sowie  die luxuriösen Resorts  „Porto Hydra“ und „Hydra Beach“, und es besteht eine gute Verbindung mit regelmäßigen Schiffsrouten zu der kosmopolitischen  Insel Hydra.

Campingplatz & Hotel Xenia Paliouri, Chalkidiki

Auch auf der einmaligen Halbinsel Chalkidiki wird eine Immobilie angeboten.

Xenia

Im Dorf Paliouri, auf Kassandra – den ersten „Fuß“ von Chalkidiki , mit einigen der schönsten Strände Griechenlands, befindet sich direkt am Meer eine der größten Hotelanlagen von Chalkidiki: die Campinganlage und das Hotel „XENIA“ Paliouri. Die Entfernung bis zum Dorf beträgt nur 3 Kilometer.

Diese Immobilie ist von einer traumhaften, grünen Landschaft umgeben, weist über eine Gesamtfläche von 210.742 qm auf und umfasst die Hotelanlagen von „XENIA“  (3.658 qm) sowie die Einrichtungen vom Camping in Paliouri (1.128 qm). Die Küstenlinie der gesamten Immobilie beträgt ca. 1.300m. 

Die Immobilie eignet sich für die Errichtung von erstklassigen Ferienhäusern und Unterkunftseinrichtungen auf einer Nutzungsfläche von insgesamt 19.954 qm. Zudem kann auch die Errichtung einer luxuriösen Hotelanlage von ca. 3.658 qm geplant werden.

Golden Hall – Mall in Athen

Die anstehenden Privatisierungen in Griechenland umfassen auch das große, moderne Einkaufszentrum GOLDEN HALL, das sich auf einem Grundstück mit einer Gesamtfläche von 64.000 qm befindet und unmittelbaren Zugang zum Sportzentrum „Olympic Complex“ hat. Diese Anlage wurde für die Olympischen Sommerspiele errichtet und umschließt zudem auch das Olympische Fußballstadium. Die Immobilie wurde ursprünglich zum Zweck der Unterbringung des Internationalen Rundfunkzentrums (IBC) errichtet, um die Olympischen Spiele vor Ort zu übertragen. Nach den Olympischen Spielen, erfolgte ihr Umbau in ein Einkaufszentrum.

Die Immobilie des Einkaufzentrums „GOLDEN HALL“ weist eine Gesamtfläche von ca. 132.200 qm, mit einem Aufbau von ca. 73.000 qm und sie verfügt über unterirdischen Hilfsräumen und Parkplätzen mit einer Fläche von ca. 59.200 qm.

Darüber hinaus sind am Gebäude eine zusätzliche, freistehende Fläche von 14.300 qm vorzufinden, und eine Tiefgarage mit einer Gesamtfläche von 7.300 qm.

Der freistehende Bereich des Gebäudes kann hauptsächlich zu kulturellen, freizeitlichen  oder pädagogischen Zwecken genutzt werden. 



Greece Opens Its Doors to Overseas Business

Publiziert am 27.Mai.2013 von Abraam Kosmidis

Improvements in the European economy and recent internal developments within Greece suggest that now would be a good time for overseas companies looking to set up a business in Greece to start taking steps to bring these plans to fruition.

KPAG Kosmidis & Partners is a Greek law firm with lawyers who specialise in working with English-speaking businesses in Greece. Our lawyers are ideally qualified to help and advise international companies as they go through the process of establishing trade links with Greece, or setting up business operations within the country.

Positive economic picture

There are currently encouraging economic signs across the European Union, with recent figures released by the European Commission (EC) suggesting that the EU economy is starting to come out of the recession that was so dominant and damaging throughout 2012. Predictions are that the economy across Europe will stabilise in the first six months of 2013, with GDP growth starting to turn positive in the latter half of the year and then continuing to gain ground into 2014.

EC initiatives target Greece

As a business destination, Greece has recently been the focus of a great deal of attention from the EC. A recent EC initiative has seen the representatives of more than 138 European companies come to Greece to meet with Greek owners and managers of small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs) about the prospects for future collaborations, including ventures such as trade partnerships, investment, and joint undertakings.

The EC notes that SMEs in Greece have faced a number of difficulties in the last few years; however the Greek government has implemented a number of reforms that have had a positive effect on the Greek economy and business opportunities within Greece.

Greek labour market

One of the areas targeted by reforms is the Greek labour market, which has historically suffered from high unemployment rates, caused in part by a rigid wage structure that was not in line with worker productivity. The Greek Government has attempted to tackle this problem through a number of reforms, including creating opportunities for firm-level pay agreements and reductions in minimum wages.

This improved labour market increases Greece’s appeal as a business destination, but there are undoubtedly a number of challenges involved in employing staff in an overseas country. Therefore, any foreign company looking to operate in Greece is advised to take advice from professional Greek lawyers to ensure they do not fall foul of any employment laws or regulations. Kosmidis & Partners Law Firm has lawyers who are highly experienced in Greek labour law and are available to advise all foreign businesses on any legal obligations with regard to their staff in Greece.

Greece looking to establish trade links

According to EC figures, Greek exports look set for another good year, making 2013 the fourth year in a row where exports have grown. The Greek Foreign Trade Board apparently has over 60 different trade initiatives organised for 2013, including the participation in a number of international trade fairs.

Through these initiatives, Greece is opening its doors to businesses looking to expand their international markets. At Kosmidis & Partners, our lawyers are ready to advise you in all aspects of doing business in Greece, including:

  • Setting up a limited liability company
  • Mergers and acquisitions in Greece
  • Greek competition law
  • Debt recovery, and
  • Tax law

The improving economic situation in Greece has not gone unnoticed. In a recent report produced by the World Bank on doing business in Greece, the country’s ranking improved from 89 to 78, a rise of 11 places, placing Greece in the top ten reformers worldwide.

European right to freedom of movement

As well as continuing to make its own internal reforms to increase foreign and domestic business opportunities, Greece, like all other EU Member States, continues to be subject to new laws and amendments coming from the EC and the European Parliament that are designed to reduce barriers to trade.

The EC has recently proposed a new measure to improve the application of EU law on people’s right to work in another Member State.

According to EC figures, there were 6.6 million EU citizens living and working in a Member State other than their own in 2012. A further 1.2 million people apparently live in one EU country while working in another.

However, people working in another country can face a number of difficulties, and a Eurobarometer poll carried out September 2011 found that around 15% of EU citizens wouldn’t want to work in another Member State because there are too many obstacles to overcome. These obstacles include issues such as:

  • Differing recruitment conditions.
  • Access to certain posts is restricted by nationality conditions.
  • Differing working conditions in practice (such as pay and future career prospects).
  • Non-recognition of professional qualifications and experience acquired in other Member States.

EU legislation already exists to tackle these issues, but is not always adequately implemented in all Member States. The EC’s proposal would address this problem by requiring Member States to take a number of steps to improve the implementation of EU law.

László Andor, Commissioner for Employment, Social Affairs and Inclusion, described the free movement of workers across the EU as a key principle of the EU’s Single Market.

“Labour mobility is a win—win – it benefits both Member States‘ economies and the individual workers concerned,” he explained. “This proposal will help workers to overcome obstacles to working in another EU country.“

Overseas companies that have set up business in Greece will usually have a number of options when it comes to staffing these businesses. One option could be to recruit local staff to work for them, or alternatively, the company could look at transferring staff from other office locations to work in its Greek operations.

The prospect of negotiating another country’s rules and regulations relating to the recruitment and employment of staff can at first appear rather daunting for companies, but using local Greek lawyers can help to make the whole process much more straightforward.

The lawyers at Kosmidis & Partners are highly experienced in all aspects of Greek business and labour law, and will be able to guide overseas businesses through all the necessary steps involved in setting up a local base of operations in Greece and employing the necessary staff.



Supporting International Businesses Operations

Publiziert am 23.April.2013 von Abraam Kosmidis

Like many other European countries, Greece welcomes business and investment from overseas, but for many small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs) the prospect of operating outside the borders of its own country can be very daunting.

This uncertainty can be caused by a number of factors, including possible language difficulties, cultural differences, a lack of knowledge of the legal systems operating in other countries and the need to source local expert advice from professionals such as lawyers or accountants.

In the current economic downturn, going abroad to countries such as Greece to do business can offer a life-line to companies struggling to find a big enough customer base in their home country. Many businesses may also be finding that they have no choice but to operate abroad if they wish to remain competitive. The European Union has a population of around 500 million, making it one of the biggest marketplaces in the world and an ideal destination for ambitious companies that are eager to expand their business operations.

One particular fear SMEs may have about operating internationally is how to ensure they receive payment for the goods or services they provide to customers in another country. If payment is not forthcoming and a debt recovery situation develops, the company may be unsure how to go about finding a lawyer and taking legal action to ensure all money owing to it is recovered.

The European Commission (EC) is aware that these issues and concerns can create barriers to overseas business, and is taking action to promote the operation of SMEs across international borders.

International debt recovery

One such measure from the EC is the launch of a new initiative that aims to support SMEs in recovering debts across borders, by advising them how to make use of existing laws and mechanisms to effectively tackle overseas debtors. The campaign is running in Greece as well as the other 26 EU Member States, and also in Croatia.

„With this campaign we wish to encourage small enterprises to operate beyond their borders,” explained European Commission Vice President Antonio Tajani, who is responsible for Industry and Entrepreneurship. “Facilitating the recovery of cross-border debts is the key to addressing this issue at a time when Europe’s 21 million SMEs face particular obstacles to tapping cross-border markets.”

“Their uncertainties are mainly due to the lack of knowledge of existing mechanisms for reducing the risk involved in cross border contracts, insufficient credit management processes, or even cultural differences in doing business between different Member States,“ he added.

Using existing laws

There are already a number of laws in place across the EU that are designed to support businesses in dealing with cross-border disputes that could potentially lead to litigation.

These laws have been developed to help businesses resolve issues such as contractual obligations and to establish competent jurisdiction in the event of a dispute.

In determining cross-border contractual obligations in the EU, the principle of free choice of law applies. This principle says that:

“If no law is chosen by the parties, the law applicable to sales contracts in respect of movables, services, franchise or sales contracts will be determined by the domicile of the party providing the characteristic performance.”

In terms of competent jurisdiction, EU laws dictate that in a dispute, jurisdiction will usually rest with the court of the country in which the defendant is domiciled. If an SME is in a situation where it needs to enforce a cross-border claim in court, the court of the country in which the customer is domiciled will normally be deemed to be the competent court. However, in certain situations it may also be possible for the SME to take legal action in another Member State’s court.

Procedures are also already in place in EU Member States to help businesses in debt recovery across international borders.

Legal expertise at a local level

Each Member State may apply these EU laws and procedures slightly differently, and understanding these complexities can be challenging for businesses looking to operate internationally. Law firms in Greece such as Kosmidis & Partners Law Firm have English speaking lawyers that are fully qualified to help overseas businesses overcome these barriers. Our lawyers can advise companies operating in Greece in the interpretation and application of these laws to ensure any business transactions, including debt recovery, are conducted as quickly and efficiently as possible.

Improving trade mark registration

The EC has also recently taken action to improve the trade mark registration system across the EU.

Trade marks are an important legal tool, and a properly registered trade mark can become one of a company’s most important assets. It allows a business to distinguish itself from its competitors and gain a real competitive edge by:

  • enabling customers to easily identify the source of the goods or services,
  • providing customers with a guarantee of consistency and quality, and
  • assisting in a company’s marketing and advertising strategy by forming a key part of a company’s brand identity.

Failing to properly register a trade mark could have very serious consequences for a business. It could allow a competitor to seize the opportunity to register the trade mark for itself and use it to promote its own goods and services.

The level of demand for trade mark protection across the EU is very high. Figures from the EC show that there were approximately 540,000 trade mark applications made in 2011. The figures also show that, as of March 2013, there were around 9.8 million trade marks listed in registers throughout the EU.

In light of how important trade marks are for business, the EC has proposed a series of reforms that are designed to encourage business innovation by ensuring companies have greater trade mark protection against counterfeits.

„Trade marks were the EU’s first success in intellectual property rights,” said Internal Market and Services Commissioner Michel Barnier. “The harmonisation of Member States‘ laws in 1989 and the creation of the Community trade mark in 1994 paved the way for other tools for intellectual property protection, such as design protection and the unitary patent.”

“Today, 20 years later, I am very proud to announce that our trade mark system has stood the test of time. There is no need for a major overhaul: the foundations of our system remain perfectly valid. What we are aiming for is a well-targeted modernisation to make trade mark protection easier, cheaper, and more effective,“ he concluded.

The EC’s proposed revisions include:

  • Streamlining and harmonising the trade mark registration procedure across all Member States, and using the existing Community trade mark system as a benchmark;
  • Bringing the existing provisions up to date, and increasing legal certainty by removing any ambiguities and incorporating the case law that has been established over time by decisions of the Court of Justice of the European Union;
  • Enhancing the tools that are available to tackle the problem of counterfeit goods being transported across the EU; and
  • Putting measures in place to encourage greater cooperation between the trade mark offices located in each Member State and the EU trade mark agency (the Office for Harmonisation in the Internal Market). This would allow for a greater convergence off their practices and enable common tools to be developed.

According to the EC, these changes would make trade mark systems across Europe more accessible and efficient, and would therefore encourage business innovation and growth.

Kosmidis & Partners Law Firm has a team of highly experienced lawyers that are able to advise clients on all aspects of trade mark law in Greece, including the registration of a trade mark and how to seek damages in the event of a breach of trade mark protection.

Next steps

The EC’s trade mark proposals will now be passed to the European Parliament and the European Council for adoption. The EC hopes the new proposals will be adopted by the spring of 2014. Member States will then have two years to implement the new rules of the Directive into national law.



Law to accelerate formation of companies in Greece

Publiziert am 13.Mai.2011 von Abraam Kosmidis

Law 3853/2010 made provision for simplification and acceleration of the procedures for forming a company in Greece, with the aim of processing investment projects quicker and more effectively. This law was essentially implemented by ministerial order no. K1-802 of 23.3.2011, which specified the implementing provisions, procedures and requirements for rapid and more cost-effective formation of companies in Greece.

The fundamental concept behind the law is setting up of a service, a „one-stop shop“, to which parties interested in starting up a business in Greece can turn and which can circumvent the time-consuming, bureaucratic procedure, involving various authorities and public agencies, that was previously necessary.

To set up general and limited partnerships, it is anticipated that the local Citizens Service Centres (KEP) and the General Commercial Registries (GEMI) based in the Chambers of Commerce will operate as what are known as „one-stop shops“, whereas notaries will be accredited „one-stop shops“ for formation of limited liability companies. Kosmidis & Partners works closely with notaries to offer this service.
Gesamten Artikel lesen »