CNIPA Enhances Protection of Integrated Circuit Layout Design
In order to carry out the decisions and deployment of CPC Central Committee and State Council on tightened IPR protection, enhance the protection of exclusive rights related to integrated circuit (IC) layout design and improve the efficiency and level of examination and law enforcement on IC layout design, the National Intellectual Property Administration of China (CNIPA) recently released the Guideline on Examination and Law Enforcement of Integrated Circuit Layout Design (tentative) (hereinafter referred to as “the Guideline”).
The formulation and introduction of the Guideline is included in the key work by the leading party group of CNIPA in 2019. As instructed and required by CNIPA, the IPR protection department works with the department of review and invalidity, the department of first review in setting up a work team in charge of devising the Guideline. After the first draft was open for comments and suggestions within and outside CNIPA, the text is finalized and introduced, which absorbs proper comments and inputs of various parties and is based on the principles of respect and in line with host laws, practice and current management system.
The Guideline of 88,000 words consists four parts, including registration examination, reexamination and cancellation, administrative law enforcement as well as licensing and pledge.
The Regulations on Protection of Integrated Circuit Layout Design came into force in 2001 in China. Applications of IC layout design keep rapid increase, so does the number of cancellation cases concluded. Now, 6 registrations for pledge contracts, involving 50 items of IC layout designs, are handled. The first administrative case of infringement concerning the IC layout design was concluded in 2018.