In a sign of how copyright law in Europe is changing, the European Commission said on Monday that the number of trademark registrations in the EU rose last year, to 2,053.
In 2012, the figure was 1,731.
The EU said the rise in trademark registrations was a result of the “urgent need” to prevent piracy and counterfeit goods from reaching Europe, and to help the EU remain competitive and “innovative”.
It said the number registered trademark searches increased in 2014 by 17 percent to 5,061, a slight increase over the previous year.
But in an interview with Reuters, EU Commissioner for Justice and Fundamental Rights Vera Jourova said it was “unfair” for companies to be able to stop people from using their trademarks in Europe.
“I think it is really unfair to stop someone from using a trademark.
It is not possible to stop somebody from using it, you can’t stop somebody who has registered a trademark, so you cannot stop them from using the mark,” she said.
Jourova has been fighting for years to change EU copyright law to allow copyright holders to stop online copyright infringement and to give copyright holders more control over how their products are marketed and sold.
The UK government has been pushing the EU to reform copyright laws to make it easier for copyright holders.