Edited by Stefan Luginbuehl and Peter Ganea
Chapter 2: TECHNOLOGY TRANSFER IN CHINA
There is no legal definition of ‘technology transfer’ in Chinese law, nor is there one specific law governing technology transfer. Rather, the term is used differently in different contexts and the relevant rules have to be looked up in a variety of laws and regulations. As a general concept, technology transfer covers any act involving the transfer of – or investment into – technology, intellectual property (IP) rights, know-how, and so on from abroad into China (‘import of technology’), or from China to abroad (‘export of technology’). Of course it is also possible that technology is transferred within China from one company to another. This type of technology transfer is, however, not the subject of this chapter. The term ‘technology transfer’ can thus refer to the simple act of transferring a Chinese patent application from a Chinese company or inventor to a company outside China, or it can cover a complicated creation of a joint venture (JV) in China between a foreign company and a local partner with the aim of starting developing technology for local market needs. Both are legally and practically treated as technology transfer and therefore have to be in line with the pertinent regulations. Technology transfer in general is not easy to grasp. Together with the dissemination of the relevant regulations concerning technology transfer and its general broad interpretation in China, it becomes even more important to define clearly what technology transfer is all about.
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