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China to further reform government functions in relation to intellectual property to spur innovation

Wang Keju
Updated: April 27, 2021 21:47

China will take new steps to reform the government functions regarding intellectual property to facilitate entrepreneurial activity and innovation, and boost innovation by market entities, the State Council’s executive meeting chaired by Premier Li Keqiang decided on April 27.

“Protecting intellectual property is protecting innovation,” Premier Li said. “This is a key part of our effort in fostering a world-class, market-oriented business climate governed by a sound legal framework. It will also help keep the industrial and supply chains stable, and make China a robust market for attracting foreign investment, a market of fair competition and win-win cooperation.”

The period required for reviewing trademarks and patents will be further reduced. By the end of this year, the time needed for general trademark registration will be cut from eight to seven months.

Online processing of prioritized patent review and application for electronic registration of pledges will be advanced. Electronic trademark registration certificates and patent certificates will be promoted. The review period will be significantly shortened for the alteration and extension of patents for invention and of trademarks whose application is made electronically.

The approach of pre-commitment compliance will be applied in approving the registration of trademark or patent pledges and the licenses for special agencies.

The quality of intellectual property will be prioritized over simple pursuit of quantity. The quantity of patent application and licensing should not be the main criterion when deciding on rewards or making qualification assessment. Financial assistance and incentives during trademark and patent application will be called off across the board.

These measures are designed to foster an enabling environment for researchers to focus on their areas of work, and produce more basic and original research outcomes.

“While shortening the patent review period, we must pay special attention to improving the quality of intellectual property. Basic and original research outcomes are still limited in our country. We must recognize the gap and enhance basic research with steady and solid steps,” Premier Li said.

While ensuring data security, basic data of intellectual property will be made public, to catalyze corporate R&D and innovation. The protection of intellectual property will be intensified every step of the way, and unlawful agencies, as well as malicious trademark registration and irregular patent application will be cracked down on in accordance with the law.

“We will continue to strengthen IPR protection, and any infringement identified will be seriously dealt with,” Premier Li said.