Strategies, Contexts and Challenges
Edited by Ken Shao and Xiaoqing Feng
Chapter 2: Roadmaps of China’s National Intellectual Property Strategy Outline
In 2004, headed by the State Intellectual Property Office (SIPO), the government of the People’s Republic of China began to design the nation’s national intellectual property (IP) strategy. At that time, China had been a World Trade Organization (WTO) member for about three years. Trade rules under the WTO institution had started to have an impact on China. Increasingly, Chinese enterprises were drawn into international IP lawsuits, in particular in or with developed countries such as the US and the EU members. Some countries frequently lodged legal actions against China under the WTO’s dispute resolution mechanism. This made more and more people and companies in China realize that IP is a key element in global economic competition and plays a very important role in a nation’s development. By 2004 a modern IP system complying with the relevant international standards had been fairly well established in China. But ironically, there were only a limited number of people and entities in China that were qualified in handling IP affairs. Improving China’s domestic IP implementation system was still a challenge, not to mention the strategic application of an IP system in general and the WTO rules in particular. Here comes a compliance question that has attracted wide attention in China: how should China respond to various challenges that the WTO system puts forward to it? In the meantime, by 2004 the Chinese economy had been travelling at high growth rates for more than 20 years, under a labour-intensive model.
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