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China improves IPR protection

Xinhua | Updated: 2017-04-26 14:36

BEIJING — China has taken steps to better protect intellectual property rights (IPR) as part of larger effort to create a more innovative economy.

Chinese police solved 17,000 cases involving IPR infringement worth 4.6 billion yuan ($670 million) in 2016, Shen Changyu, head of the State Intellectual Property Office (SIPO), said at a press conference Tuesday.

Customs authorities seized more than 17,000 shipments of goods suspected of IPR infringement in 2016, involving about 42 million individual units, Shen noted.

Chinese courts heard 136,500 IPR cases in 2016, a 24.8 percent increase. A total of 3,797 people were arrested and 7,059 were prosecuted.

Industry and commerce regulators increased online supervision and inspection in rural markets that are prone to counterfeits.

They solved nearly 50,000 IPR cases worth about 560 million yuan, and transferred 293 cases worth 160 million yuan to courts in 2016, said Liu Junchen, deputy director of the State Administration for Industry and Commerce.

The copyright watchdog has instigated 5,578 cases involving Internet IPR infringement and shut down 3,079 websites, with total fines of 20.5 million yuan, since 2005, said Yu Cike, director of the copyright management department under the National Copyright Administration.

In March, China's cabinet, the State Council, issued a guideline on counterfeiting and IPR infringements demanding better market supervision system and improvements to the law, regulations and standards with appropriate information technology utilized in supervision.

A group of IPR protection centers will be established to fast-track cases involving IPR infringement, said Shen.

With the government's efforts to improve IPR protection, the country's inventiveness has grown.

China's patent office received nearly 1.34 million applications for invention patents in 2016, up 21.5 percent year-on-year. Chinese inventors made more than 40,000 international applications last year.

China continued to top global trademark applications in 2016, with about 3.7 million trademark applications, up 28.4 percent on 2015. The number of valid trademarks registered in China was nearly 12.4 million by the end of 2016.

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