Regulatory reforms in Greece – a comprehensive legal overview. Prepared in association with Calavros Law Firm, a leading global law firm, this is an extract from The Pharma Legal Handbook: Greece, available to purchase here for USD 99.
1. Are there proposals for reform or significant change to the healthcare system?
A. The recently enacted Law 4578/2018 on the “Reduction of social security contributions and other provisions” establishes under its paragraph 12 the new percentages of imposed reduction (namely “rebate”) on the total amount of due claims held by –among others- pharmaceutical companies and medical devices suppliers against EOPYY. The “rebate practice” allowed EOPYY to redeem long outstanding debts to pharmaceutical companies and other stakeholders of the industry by way of imposing significant discounts (ranging from 5% to 25%) on the total amount thereof. The legality of the different kinds of rebates adopted until today has been sanctioned by the Council of State and the recent provision is indeed indicative of a practice that has already become a permanent feature of the pharmaceutical and medical devices markets in Greece.
B. A new law on trademarks in application of Directive (EU) 2015/2436 is expected to be published soon. Said law, which will replace specific trademark – related provisions of Law 4072/2012 currently in force, has recently been put to public consultation. The new law will introduce novel types of trade- marks, such as the shape or packaging of goods, and even sounds and slogans under specific conditions; the fees relevant to the various procedures before the General Secretariat of Commerce will also be increased under the new law.
In addition, the draft law introduces two important innovations; namely:
- The right of intervention of the proprietor of a later registered trade mark as defense in infringement proceedings and
- The registration of guarantee or certification marks; this type of trademark is capable of distinguishing goods or services which are certified by the pro- prietor of the mark with respect to a specific material, mode of manufacture of goods or performance of services, quality, accuracy or other characteristics, from non – certified goods and /or services.
2. When are they likely to come into force?
A. Law 4578/2018 on the “Reduction of the social security contributions and other provisions” entered into force on 03.12.2018.
B. The new law on trademarks is expected to be published soon after the clo- sure of the public consultation, i.e. 25.01.2019.