Elgar Intellectual Property and Global Development series
Edited by Nari Lee, Niklas Bruun and Mingde Li
Chapter 4: Intellectual property law revision in China: transplantation and transformation
In the protection of intellectual property rights, China is an importer of international norms. On the basis of the international intellectual property norms, China enacted its modern Trademark Law, Patent Law, Copyright Law, and Unfair Competition Law, and amended the laws thereafter. However, China is not a rigid importer of international norms, and has always tried to accommodate the norms into its special political, economic, and social structures. Due to this accommodation, some of the international norms have been transformed, misunderstood, and not functioned well in China. China is currently undergoing its third round revision of its intellectual property laws. This revision is an opportunity for China to reinterpret some of these intellectual property norms on the basis of its current social and economic development. It is also an opportunity to correct some of the misunderstandings that have arisen; such as removing the protection for video recordings, emphasizing the use of registered trademarks, and to provide the ‘likelihood of confusion doctrine’ as an objective standard for trademark infringement. The development of the Chinese intellectual property system is modelled primarily on continental European systems. However, it is not so difficult for China to accept intellectual property norms from the Anglo-American system either. In this respect, it is even possible for China to conceive some new norms, if necessary, for the country's social and economic development. In turn, it is possible that these new Chinese norms may contribute to international intellectual property rights standards
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