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Previewing the Chinese IPR Landscape in 2030
This week the World Bank released the “China 2030 Report,” a study done in partnership with the Chinese State Council analyzing China’s medium-term developmental challenges and looking forward to 2030. This report is important and timely— how China decides to move forward will have lasting consequences on the region, and the world.
As should be expected, protecting intellectual property rights (IPR) in China is highlighted in the Report as an important pillar for enhancing innovation and adopting an open society. It is noted that China has made “substantial progress in IPR protection to further its ambition [of] becoming an innovative country.” The GIPC agrees and applauds the Chinese government for its work to emphasize the protection of IPR as a basic regime in igniting innovation and working to improve transparency. However, there is much work to be done. U.S. companies continue to see online piracy and counterfeiting at unacceptable levels, the use of illegal software across the country, and minimal amount of protection or legal remedy for legal patent holders. The GIPC continues to be active in all of these areas, and will work closely with our Chinese partners to improve IPR protection for both domestic and foreign companies.
IPR protection continues to be a top concern for U.S. companies doing business in China. However, it is a growing concern for Chinese domestic companies as well. As the Report points out, “China has the potential to improve the institutional arrangements needed to encourage broadbased innovation… [including] enforcement of laws protecting intellectual property rights.” In order to develop an open innovation system, “effective protection of IP will expedite the growth of China’s innovation capabilities.” As China works to develop an innovative society, one with a pro-business and entrepreneurial culture that can grow the Chinese middle class, ensuring that patent, copyright, and trademark holders are protected will be critical.
The GIPC commends the World Bank and the Chinese leadership for releasing this report, and looks forward to working on these important matters in 2012 and beyond.