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Institutional reform to help strengthen IP protection

By Liu Hua | China Daily | Updated: 2023-03-14 07:19
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China's customs authorities takes a total of 65,300 actions to protect the intellectual property rights of exported and imported products in 2020. [Photo/IC]

Innovation has become a critical driver of global economic development, with technological advancements such as AI, big data, cloud computing, and block chain paving the way for new waves of innovation in the Digital Age and Deep Science.

Intellectual Property (IP) has a vital role to play in promoting industrial upgrading, creating jobs, attracting investment, and improving business competitiveness. In this context, the Chinese government's institutional reform plan to elevate the China National Intellectual Property Administration (CNIPA) to a directly affiliated agency under the State Council is a significant step toward enhancing the status of IP in China's future strategy and promoting high-quality development and expanding high-level opening-up.

The plan aims to improve the IP management system, placing the work of patent and trademark confirmation under the CNIPA, while leaving the enforcement part to the market regulation department. This arrangement will strengthen the protection of IP as a whole by clarifying the responsibilities of the CNIPA and the market regulation department, and the two departments will work together to protect IP, contributing to the building of a strong IP powerhouse. The WIPO Office in China (WOC) welcomes the plan and believes that this reform will comprehensively improve IP creation, utilization, protection, management, and services in China.

China's achievements in innovation are remarkable, with the country ranking 11th in the WIPO's Global Innovation Index (GII) in 2022, up 23 places from 2012, and the only middle-income economy breaking into the top 15. China is already a major IP country and a global innovation leader, ranking 1st in nine of the 81 innovation indicators of the GII. These accomplishments demonstrate China's commitment to building a strong IP powerhouse country with Chinese characteristics and world-class level, as set out in the Outline of Building a Strong IP Powerhouse (2021-35) and the 14th Five-Year National Plan for IP Protection and Utilization.

As the WIPO's extension in China, the WOC values the close and friendly cooperation with China, appreciates China's significant achievements in IP development and the building of innovative ecosystems, and sees the huge potential of China's innovation-driven development. The WOC will continue to strengthen coordination and cooperation with China, closely connect with media, markets, and stakeholders in government, academia, and business, and provide timely, tailored and targeted services to empower China's scientific and technological innovation with IP and promote high-quality development.

The author is director of the World Intellectual Property Organization Office in China. The views don't necessarily represent those of China Daily.

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