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IP cooperation can help ease companies' concerns

By Zhang Chunyan (China Daily) Updated: 2014-10-14 14:05

Closer cooperation between China and other countries on protecting intellectual property rights is a good way to ease the concerns of overseas companies.

The benefits of an efficient and fair global IP system will also boost inward and outward trade and investment for both China and other countries.

For many years, the issue of protecting IP rights has been one of the biggest hurdles for foreign companies to overcome when thinking about entering China. While significant progress has been made in China on many fronts, some Western countries are still worried about IP protection.

Strengthening cooperation with foreign countries, especially those with well-developed systems for IP protection, can benefit overseas businesses and increase their confidence and trust in China.

Alibaba Group Holding Ltd signed an agreement with the China-Britain Business Council early this month to protect intellectual property and crack down on counterfeiters.

In response to pirated items on its websites, the company has removed millions of knockoffs after receiving complaints.

Other companies are taking similar initiatives, such as, which has teamed up with Topshop boss Phillip Green to sell items from the British multinational retailer on its luxury retail site, confident that they are not fakes.

Such progress is being hailed by British business circles. IP concerns should not stop companies from pursuing opportunities in China, said Lucy Neville-Rolfe, Britain's IP minister and parliamentary undersecretary of the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills, who concluded a five-day visit to China in early September.

In the United Kingdom, laws covering patents, trademarks, copyrights and designs have been formulated to help companies large and small. Working with the British side can improve China's IP protection in the UK as well.

In the most recent sign of progress, an agreement between the UK Copyright Licensing Agency and the China Written Works Copyright Society was signed in Beijing.

The agreement, in a first, will place Chinese written works in the British market, including books, articles in newspapers and magazines and academic papers, under the protection of the CLA, a nonprofit organization that has authorized more than 39,000 organizations and publications to copy and use copyright works while obtaining fair rewards for rights holders.

There are many ways for China to cooperate with other countries and build up a strong international IP system.

IP cooperation can help ease companies' concerns

IP cooperation can help ease companies' concerns

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