Plant varieties are recognized and protected in the country by the Constitution of the Republic of Ecuador, by the Organic Code of the Social Economy of Knowledge, Creativity, and Innovation, by Decision 345 of the Andean Community and by the UPOV Convention, to which 75 countries are signatories. The Law grants a breeder’s certificate to the person or company that has created a new, distinguishable, uniform, and stable plant variety, which has been assigned a denomination that constitutes its generic designation. The breeder’s certificate is valid for 18 years for vine, forest, fruit, and ornamental tree varieties and for 15 years for other varieties.
According to Decision 345 of the Andean Community, the breeder shall enjoy provisional protection from the filing of the application until the granting of the certificate, with which they may exercise all the rights recognized in the Law in order to avoid the violation of their intellectual property rights by unauthorized third parties. The Ecuadorian Law grants the breeder the exclusive right to authorize or prohibit the exploitation of a variety, so he has the right to charge royalties to any person who intends to carry out activities of production, commercialization, sale, reproduction, propagation, among others. The competent national authority for intellectual property shall sanction those who carry out the above activities without the proper license or authorization of the breeder. These sanctions range from financial penalties to the definitive closure of the establishment where the breeder’s intellectual property rights have been infringed.