In June 2008, the China State Council officially promulgated the “Outline of National Intellectual Property Strategy.” The Outline identified “the development and improvement of the standard related policies, standardization of the behavior of incorporating patents into standards”as a special task. In November 2009, the Standards Administration of China (SAC) issued for public comments the “Regulations on the Administration of the Formulation and Revision of Patent Involving National Standards (Interim).” The China National Institute of Standardization (CNIS) followed shortly there after in early 2010 and released the draft “Disposal Rules for the Inclusion of Patents in National Standards” for comments. Together these documents reveal the approach China is contemplating for meeting the mandate of the China State Council.
The IP landscape in Asia, particularly China, is changing. On one side of the equation, foreign businesses are moving to invest in real R&D in China and are consequently moving from filing in Asia only when there was a key strategic need to adopting a “must file in Asia” strategy for all major developments China, as a country of origin, is already the sixth largest filer of Patent Cooperation Treaty (PCT) applications globally. In 2009, China accepted 315,000 international and domestic invention patent applications, the domestic applications of which accounting for 72.8%; the authorized invention patents were 128,000 pieces, the domestic authorizations of which accounting for 50.9%; the residents in China submitted 7,946 international patent applications, ranking the fifth in the world.
Vice Chairman of the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress Lu Yongxiang said, in order to enhance the abilities on intellectual property (IP) creation, application, management and protection, the central finance set up a special fund to give subsidy to the excellent domestic SMEs, units and scientific institutions which apply international patents, and a total of 1,146 international patent applications were supported in 2009 with 52.85 million yuan; actively carried out the work of IP pilot and model that boosted the industrialization of patent applications and so on.
New Patent Law impact on patent strategies
The new Patent Law, which came into force on 1st October 2009, introduces welcome changes aimed at preventing the misuse of patents. Two of the key
developments are the introduction of an absolute novelty standard for inventions (previously, foreign prior use was not relevant), and the introduction of a prior art defense (i.e., that the allegedly infringing technology falls within the prior art and hence does not infringe). Together, these changes should reduce the threat to foreign rights holders of
so-called junk patents (i.e., patents – typically utility model patents- obtained in China on the back of others’ foreign technologies and frivolous infringement claims based on them); but it certainly does not change the need for preparedness and due diligence.
WTO SAYS CHINA MAINTAINS ECONOMIC OPENING POLICY
It added China had continued to attach high importance to the multilateral trading system and been participating actively in the Doha Round trade opening negotiations, which involve all the WTO’s 153 members. According to the report, China “resisted a protectionist response to the effects of the global economic recession.” “The Chinese government responded to the effects of the global economic recession by introducing expansionary fiscal and monetary policies to offset the sharp decline in external demand, putting more emphasis on domestic demand to drive GDP growth,”the report said.
US-China relations are improving on the back of their need for mutual support after undergoing a rocky period earlier this year, US Congressman Adam Schiff said. He said both countries needed each other’s support in forums such as the six-party talks to resolve the issue of nuclear proliferation on the peninsular. The United States also needed China’s cooperation in developing alternative and green energy. The two nations could not simply compete with each other on this front, but needed to learn from each other, he said.
Schiff sponsored the Nuclear Forensics and Attribution Act to strengthen the US Department of Homeland Security’s efforts in developing techniques for “fingerprinting”nuclear material and encouraged US President Barack Obama to negotiate international agreements to govern international nuclear forensics activities. Schiff is also leading the effort to combat intellectual property theft. He is a co-chair of the Congressional International Anti-Piracy Caucus, a bipartisan group of House and Senate lawmakers dedicated working with America’s international trading partners to secure the enactment of strong copyright laws as well as their vigilant enforcement.
EU-China training for IP protection at trade fairs
IPR2, together with the China Council for the Promotion of International Trade (CCPIT), entrusted by the Ministry of Commerce, to implement a training programme with Chinese companies and government officials making on how to protect IP at trade fairs, at Guilin, Zhejiang, Beijing, on 12-16 July 2010. European experts present the leading IP protection measures in Europe, and explain how companies can prepare to make use of the system, supported by case studies from major exhibitions in Europe. In addition, the training will elaborate the role and scope of the recently introduced function of on-site mediation support for exhibitors. As part of its co-operation with MOFCOM, IPR2 will address IP protection at trade fairs in China. This will include awareness building activities such as best practice seminars on the protection of IPRs at trade fairs, physical presence at exhibitions and moot trials on IPR enforcement in Europe and China.