A Global and Local Outlook
Elgar Intellectual Property Law and Practice series
Edited by Irene Calboli and Jacques de Werra
Chapter 20: CHINESE TRADEMARK LAW AND TRADEMARK TRANSACTIONS: A LAW IN TRANSITION IN THE GLOBAL ECONOMY
Trademark law in the People’s Republic of China (PRC) has undergone a significant evolution in the past century to respond to the economic needs of consumers and manufacturers in a globalized economy. The PRC’s change in its trademark system signified not only this drastic change, but also the desire of the national government to have significant regulation over what trademarks are registered, the registration process itself, and the rights associated with the mark once registered. This chapter proceeds as follows. First, it will discuss the developments of China’s trademark system from the mid-1900s. Second, it will discuss the conferral of trademark rights on different types of marks, including registered marks and unregistered marks. Third, it will address current issues in assigning trademark rights between parties. Fourth, it will discuss procedures for licensing trademark rights to third parties to the benefit of the original trademark owner. Finally, it will address the process for pleading a trademark. The adoption of national trademark law and the institution of a national trademark registration system is generally the result of the economic development from a national economy towards a market economy. For over a century, we have witnessed the relentless evolution and improvement of the Chinese trademark legislation. The emergence of the Chinese trademark system is to a large extent the result of the political, economic, and cultural transition that has characterized modern China, also as a consequence of theWest’s legal and economic cultural influence.
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