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Annual greetings by ECTA President and plans for 2023!
Happy New Year! May 2023 be a joyful year for you all and may it mark the end of all wars and the restoration of the state of peace. My thoughts and those of the ECTA Family are in particular with the people of Ukraine.

Despite the difficulties at a global level, 2022 was a successful year for ECTA and allowed us to meet again in person after a two-year hiatus. It was exceptional to see many ECTA friends at the ECTA ®etreat in Milan, at the memorable ECTA 40th Annual Conference in Copenhagen, and at the ECTA Autumn Meeting in Ljubljana with a successful workshop on the metaverse and NFTs. In 2022, we also hosted a number of online events, such as the round table on the limits of good faith and our first Africa-dedicated webinar. Among others, we met with relevant DGs of the European Commission, held fruitful Bilateral Meetings with EUIPO and WIPO, signed a MoU with the Bulgarian IP Office, launched the ECTA Award, actively participated in the European IP debate, as well as completed several submissions to authorities, external and internal papers for the benefit of ECTA members and the IP community.

Looking ahead to 2023, a lot is cooking for you! At the end of January, you can register at the early bird fee for the ECTA 41st Annual Conference ‘Exploring IP Magic’ in Prague (28 June - 1 July). Get ready for an extensive programme with informative sessions, distinguished guests, lively discussions, networking opportunities...and fun!

Don’t forget to also mark these dates in your calendar:

16 January: Launch of the ECTA General Committee Elections. Members can apply to join one of our Committees and contribute to the core of ECTA. If you are not yet a member, join ECTA first!
28 February: Deadline to submit your paper for the ECTA Award.
2 March: ECTA Round Table in Alicante ‘Geographical indications in the turmoil - Understanding the legal reform, the audacious case law and the relationship with trade marks’, co-organised with the University of Alicante;
20 April: ECTA ®etreat online on non-traditional trade marks;
12-14 October: ECTA Autumn Meeting in Turin for Supervisory Board and Committee members.

In 2023 we will build on and develop 2022’s achievements. We will deepen ties with our stakeholders and establish new ones both at an international and local level, advocating for a balance of IP rights. We will also continue to closely monitor, keep our members updated and contribute to the most relevant topics on the IP agenda in Europe, such as the support to SMEs, AI, EU anti-counterfeiting toolbox, and the EU Design and GIs reforms. Last but not least, three editions of the ECTA Bulletin are in the pipeline!

On behalf of the Board of Directors, I express my gratitude to all ECTA members and invite you to renew your membership (if you have not done so yet) to get the most out of our Association.

If you wish to join ECTA, please submit your membership application here. Select the membership category that suits you best and start benefitting from the advantages of being a member. I would be delighted to welcome you to the ECTA Family!

Yours sincerely,

Mladen Vukmir, ECTA President
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