On Tuesday, the Seimas of the Republic of Lithuania adopted the Law on the Ratification of the Nairobi Treaty on the Protection of the Olympic Symbol. This will ensure the legal protection of the Olympic symbol (the Olympic rings) in Lithuania.
The Olympic rings are one of the most protected symbols in the world. The Olympic Charter provides that the National Olympic Committee of a specific country is responsible for the use of the Olympic Games property and overall Olympic assets. In Lithuania, the National Olympic Committee of Lithuania (LNOC) is the responsible authority.
“It is the responsibility of the National Olympic Committee of Lithuania to protect the Olympic property from illegal use. Unfortunately, this has been difficult to ensure so far. We often used to find Olympic symbols in various logos, advertisements, slogans, we have even seen “alternative Olympic” outfits being made. The number of violations used to significantly increase before and during the Olympics, therefore I am delighted that the Treaty has been ratified in the run-up to the Tokyo Olympic Games.
The ratification of the Nairobi Treaty is a great achievement for us, towards which we have consistently worked. This involved two years of legal coordination, close cooperation with the Ministry of Education, Science and Sport (MESS) and other institutions.
I would like to thank the Ministry for their work and the Seimas for the prompt adoption of the law. The legalised protection of the Olympic symbols will enable us to meet our commitments much more simply and efficiently,“ – said Olympic champion, member of the International Olympic Committee (IOC) and President of the LNOC Daina Gudzinevičiūtė.
The Olympic Charter adopted by the IOC provides that the Olympic property includes the following: the Olympic symbol (the Olympic rings), the flag, the motto, the names and titles (including “the Olympic Games” and “the Olympics”), signs, emblems, fire and torch, as well as musical or other creative works commissioned for the purposes of the Olympic Games by the IOC, the National Olympic Committees and the Organizing Committees of the Olympic Games. In accordance with the same rule, the IOC holds exclusive rights to all Olympic property and its use for profit, commercial or promotional purposes.
52 countries, including 13 EU member states, with Lithuania’s close neighbours Estonia and Poland among them, have now joined the Nairobi Treaty signed in 1981.
The draft law was developed by the Ministry of Education, Science and Sport of the Republic of Lithuania.