Intellectual Property Protection Highlighted on the Two Sessions
Intellectual property protection played an important role on the Two Sessions - the annual plenary sessions of the two organizations that make national-level political decisions: the National People's Congress (NPC) and the National Committee of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC).
On March 12th, Shen Changyu, Commissioner of the State Intellectual Property Office of China (SIPO), responded the concerns of intellectual property protection while walking through the ministers' passage before the meeting. Shen stressed the highlights of IPR in the Report on the Work of the Government and expressed gratitude to the government's attention to IPR. In the future, China will build an intellectual property protection framework covering registration, examination and authorization, administrative enforcement, judicial adjudication, arbitration and mediation, industry self-regulation, etc. A number of IPR protection center will be set up to expedite the process of patent examination, patent authorization and patent protection. SIPO will further beef up the administrative law enforcement of intellectual property rights, especially in the areas of people's livehood, the internet, and the security areas, to provide even more convenient, efficient, low-cost channels for the public to defend their rights. China handled nearly 50,000 cases of patent administrative law enforcement in 2016, an increase of nearly 40% year on year, and more efforts in this area would be paid in 2017. Besides, SIPO will actively assist NPC in amending the Patent Law, to solve the problem in proof, process, cost, compensation and deterrence of penalty, etc.
Zhou Qiang, President of the Supreme People's Court (SPC), delivered annual work report on the SPC on March 12. In 2016, China stepped up the trials of intellectual property rights cases to stimulate innovation and entrepreneurship of diverse entities. In 2016, China improved IPR protection rules by making judiciary interpretations on the trials of certain kinds of cases, including patent right cases. Last year, China tried a series of trademark cases lodged by US basketball icon Michael Jordan, demonstrating the country's stance and determination to reinforce judicial protection for intellectual property rights. Three IPR courts in the cities of Beijing, Shanghai and Guangzhou explored the application of punitive damages to solve problems including low infringement costs and high costs for safeguarding rights. Four IPR tribunals, in charge of cross-regional IPR cases, opened in the cities of Nanjing, Suzhou, Wuhan and Chengdu in 2016. Chinese courts at different levels concluded some 147,000 IPR cases in 2016, boosting mass entrepreneurship and innovation. China will maximize the role of trials to maintain the stability of the society and promote the development, especially as the role of IPR trials to stimulate innovation and entrepreneurship.