SCIO briefing on development of China's intellectual property rights

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Shen Changyu, commissioner of the State Intellectual Property Office

Yu Cike, spokesperson of the National Copyright Administration

Xi Yanchun, vice director-general of the Press Bureau, State Council Information Office

April 24, 2018

Xi Yanchun:

Ladies and gentlemen, good morning. Welcome to this press conference. April 26 is annual World Intellectual Property Day. Since you are all very interested in the issues pertaining to this field, today we are delighted to invite Mr. Shen Changyu, commissioner of the State Intellectual Property Office, to brief you on the development of China's intellectual property rights in 2017. He will also answer some of your questions.

Also present at the press conference today is Mr. Yu Cike, spokesperson of the National Copyright Administration.

At this time, Mr. Shen will give you a brief introduction.

Shen Changyu:

Thank you, Ms. Xi. Good morning, friends from the press. Let me begin by thanking the SCIO and friends from the press for your care and support for IPR-related work. Now I would like to brief you on China's IPR development in 2017.

The CPC Central Committee and the State Council made a series of important plans on IPR-related work in 2017. In his report to the 19th CPC National Congress, General Secretary Xi Jinping emphasized that China will "foster a culture of innovation, and strengthen the creation, protection and application of intellectual property." At the first meeting of the Leading Group for Deepening Overall Reform of the 19th CPC Central Committee, Xi stressed that protecting IPRs is equivalent to protecting innovation. Local governments and related departments earnestly studied and implemented Xi Jinping Thought on Socialism with Chinese Characteristics for a New Era and the spirit of the 19th CPC National Congress. They made steady efforts toward turning China into a country with strong IPRs, achieving major progress in a number of respects.

First, IPR creation has been improved in both quantity and quality. The number of patent applications over the year rose to about 1.38 million, an increase of 14.2 percent since the previous year, ranking first in the world for seven consecutive years. The number of international patent applications under PCT was 51,000, up 12.5 percent year over year, leaping to second worldwide. The number of patents per 10,000 people reached 9.8. The number of applications for trademark registration was about 5.75 million, up 55.72 percent year over year, ranking first in the world for 16 consecutive years. The number of trademarks registered in total reached 14.92 million. The number of applications for the Madrid International Registration of Marks from Chinese applicants was 4,810, ranking third in the world. The number of works and computer software copyright registered reached about 2 million and 745,400 respectively, up 25.15 percent and 82.79 percent. The number of applications for rights for new agricultural and forestry plant varieties reached 3,842 and 623 respectively. The number of products protected by geographical indications has steadily increased.

Second, China has made steady progress in enhancing its legal system for protection of  intellectual property rights. The revision to the Law Against Unfair Competition was adopted at the 30th session of the NPC Standing Committee in 2017. We have seen substantive progress in revising and formulating the Patent Law, Regulations on Patent Commissioning and Regulations on Administration of Human Genetic Resources. We actively promoted the formulation and revision of Copyright Law, Regulations on the Protection of Olympic Symbols, Regulations on National Defense Patents, Regulations on the Protection of New Varieties of Plants and Regulations on Access to and Benefit-sharing of Biological Genetic Resources. We will step up our efforts to introduce the Guidelines on Anti-Monopoly Law Enforcement in the Field of Intellectual Property Rights. We will deepen research on the system for intellectual property rights protection of innovation achievements in new areas and business forms.

Third, the protection of intellectual property rights was more stringent. Administrative organs handled 67,000 cases related to patents, an increase of 36.3 percent year-on-year. They also handled 30,100 cases related to trademark, with a total worth of 333 million yuan. The copyright department investigated and dealt with more than 3,100 cases related to copyright infringement and piracy, and confiscated 6.05 million pirated products. Customs seized 19,200 batches of import or export goods that infringed on intellectual property rights. The cases involved 40.95 million goods with a total worth of 182 million yuan. Courts all over the country accepted 213,500 civil, administrative and criminal cases of first instance related to intellectual property rights. Of them, 203,000 cases were concluded. The number of cases accepted and concluded increased 40.37 percent and 38.38 percent respectively year-on-year. The procuratorial organs approved the arrest of 4,272 people involved in 2,510 intellectual property crimes. They also prosecuted 7,157 people involved in 3,880 lawsuits. The public security agencies solved 17,000 criminal cases concerning intellectual property right infringement and the production and sales of fake or inferior goods, with a total worth of 6.46 billion yuan. They also gave particular supervision over the handling of 44 major intellectual property rights infringement cases. A series of special law enforcement actions were taken. In an investigation on the public satisfaction with intellectual property rights protection, the public scored 76.69 for related works. Fourteen intellectual property rights protection centers were established. A nationwide network was established to provide legal aid concerning intellectual property rights protection and to accept tips and complaints of intellectual property rights infringement. Attempted steps have been taken to explore the establishment of a mechanism to coordinate the protection of the trademark rights of Chinese corporations overseas. The building of a long-term mechanism to promote the use of genuine software programs is in full swing. A campaign was launched to check the use of genuine software programs in 389 institutions in 16 provinces, autonomous regions and municipalities directly under the central government.

Fourth, the efficiency of utilizing intellectual property rights (IPRs) has been markedly improved. We have been improving the supporting mechanism for the transfer and commercialization of scientific and technological achievements, speeding up the implementation of the National Fund for Technology Transfer and Commercialization, and promoting the construction of demonstration zones for the transfer and commercialization of national scientific and technological achievements. The national public service platform for the operation of IPRs took shape as the  pilot commercialization centers in  Xi'an and Zhuhai were established and put into operation. Operation funds for IPRs in key industries have been launched in succession, and the total fund raised  has exceeded 4.2 billion yuan (US$665.13 million). Trademark and brand innovation and entrepreneurship bases were built to promote regional brand building based on industrial clusters. Copyright transaction centers and copyright trade bases were actively nurtured, and 10 national copyright transaction centers have been set up nationwide. The amount of patent pledge financing reached 72 billion yuan (US$11.4 billion), an increase of 65 percent year-on-year; the amount of trademark and copyright pledge financing reached 36.9 billion yuan (US$5.84 billion) and 5.98 billion yuan (US$947.2 million) respectively. The amount of patent insurance was 9.99 billion yuan (US$1.58 billion), an increase of 170.6 percent year-on-year. The total amount of import and export of IPR royalties exceeded US$30 billion.

Fifth is about deepening the reform in key areas of intellectual property rights. We have improved the policy of tax deductions for research and development expenses, sped up the reform on the distribution of intellectual property rights and strengthened the management and classification evaluation system for intellectual property rights in the implementation of national science and technology projects.

The one-stop service involving rapid patent examination, determination and protection as well as a new model of patent pledge financing have been included in the promotion list to support innovation and reform solutions by the State Council. We have continued to promote the reform on streamlining administration, reduced or canceled patent expanses totaling 5.8 billion yuan, and reduced the submission of various kinds of materials by about 2.7 million copies.

We have deepened the reform on facilitating trademark registration and established 105 windows for handling local trademarks as well as 49 centers for handling applications for the registration of pledge of exclusive rights to use a trademark. We have continued to promote the strict system for trademark examination, and accordingly the cycle of trademark registration has been shortened from nine months to eight months. 

We have strengthened the supervision of authentication institutions for overseas copyrights and handled the re-registration of six authentication institutions for foreign copyrights. We have continued to improve national copyright demonstration work and selected 35 demonstration units and five demonstration parks (bases).

Sixth, we have deepened international cooperation and the exchange of intellectual property rights. We signed an agreement with the World Intellectual Property Organization to strengthen "Belt and Road" intellectual property cooperation and signed a memorandum of understanding for judicial exchange and cooperation. Cambodia has become the first country to recognize the results of China's patent authorization within its own borders.

We have included relevant content on strengthening intellectual property cooperation into the BRICS Leaders Xiamen Declaration, continued to boost international cooperation in the field of trademarks, and promoted the Madrid System on international trademark registration. We have hosted the 2017 Worldwide Symposium on Geographical Indications, made substantive progress in the negotiations for agreement on geographical indications between China and the EU, and signed a memorandum on the negotiations for agreement on cooperation and protection regarding geographical indications. We have promoted an early entry into force of the Beijing Treaty on Audiovisual Performances, and 19 countries have ratified or joined the treaty. 

The above is the development of China's intellectual property rights in 2017. Thank you.

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