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INTRODUCTION

People's Republic of China (PRC) is a populous nation in East Asia whose vast landscape encompasses grassland, desert, mountains, lakes, rivers and more than 14,000km of coastline.

In 1980, the PRC became a member of the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO).

It has patterned its IPR laws on the Berne Convention for the Protection of Literary and Artistic Works and the Agreement on Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS).

The PRC acceded to the Paris Convention for the Protection of Industrial Property on 14 November 1984 and became an official member on 19 March 1985. The PRC also acceded to the Madrid Agreement for the International Registration of Trademarks in June 1989.

In January 1992, the PRC entered into a Memorandum of Understanding with the United States government to provide copyright protection for all American "works" and for other foreign works. Several bilateral negotiations have been conducted between the two governments. At some points, trade sanctions were threatened by the two governments over IPRs issues. At the conclusion of negotiations in 1995, the Sino-US Agreement on Intellectual Property Rights was signed. In June 1996, the two governments entered into another agreement protecting American intellectual property in the PRC.

The Trademark Law of the People's Republic of China sets out general guidelines on administration of trademarks, protection of trademark owners' exclusive rights and maintenance of quality of products or services bearing the registered trademarks, "with a view to protecting consumer interests and to promoting the development of the socialist commodity economy.

Adhering to Article 4 of the Paris Convention, the Chinese government passed the Provisional Regulations Governing Application for Priority Registration of Trademarks in China to grant the right of priority to trademark applications submitted in PRC by the nationals of the Paris Convention member countries.

Copyright law is mainly governed by the Copyright Law of the PRC and the Implementing Rules for the Copyright Law of the PRC, the Copyright Law of the PRC adopted and promulgated in 1990 and the "Implementing Rules" adopted in 1991 and revised in 2002. In most cases the copyright term is the life of the author plus 50 years, but for cinematographic and photographic works and works created by a company or organization the term is 50 years after first publication.

To implement the Berne Convention and the Universal Copyright Convention, as well as bilateral copyright treaties signed between the PRC and other foreign countries, the PRC government passed the Regulations on Implementation of International Copyright Treaties (1992). These have given foreign copyright holders protection for their rights and interests in the PRC.

The PRC passed the Patent Law of the PRC to encourage invention-creation and to promote the development of science and technology. The subsequent Implementing Regulations of the Patent Law of the PRC added clarification.

Country Information

Capital and largest city: Beijing
Official languages: Standard Chinese
Government: Unitary one-party socialist republic
Currency: Renminbi (yuan; ¥) (CNY) (1 $ = 6.51 CNY)
MORE ABOUT TRADEMARKS IN CHINA

LAWS

China Trademark Law      Download

FOLLOWING INDICATIONS MAY BE USED AS TRADEMARKS IN INDIA:

  • Word marks

  • Names

  • Numbers

  • Signatures

  • Letters

  • Symbols

  • Pictures

  • Inscriptions

  • Combination of all of the above

CLASSIFICATION

10th edition – Consists 45 Classes

TRADEMARK SUMMARY

  • China is a member of the Paris Convention for the Protection of Industrial Property; hence an applicant can claim priority of up to 6 months as per the convention

  • Multi-class filing system is allowed

  • Appeal can be filed to review the objected marks within thirty days of receipt of notice

  • Accepted trademarks are published in the official trademark gazette.

  • Opposition period is 3 months from the date of publication

PROTECTION TERM

  • 10 years from filing date and renewable for like periods

  • Trademark could be renewed anytime during the last 6 months of the protection period

  • A grace period of 6 months from the date of expiry is allowed, but with the penalty

RIGHTS OF TRADEMARK OWNERS

Trademarks may be:

  • Inherited

  • Assigned and licensed.

  • Mortgaged and creditors may seize such trademarks belonging to their debtors.

  • Licensed to natural or legal persons

  • Prevented from unauthorized usage by third parties

  • The subject of appropriate redressal from a court of law upon infringement

TRADEMARK USAGE IN CHINA

It is not compulsory to use the mark for filing applications or maintaining the registration in force. Continuous usage of the mark for 5 years post registration is necessary to avoid 3rd party claims on the mark.

Unauthorized use of a trademark registered under the law or an imitation of such trademark applied on goods and services of the same class, or sale, storing for the purpose of sale, or exhibiting for sale of goods and services bearing a counterfeited mark, or using a mark duly registered under the law by another person to serve the purpose of unauthorized promotion of goods or services of the same class are offenses punishable under the law

REQUISITES FOR TRADEMARK’S SERVICES

Trademark / Service Mark Applications (without priority)

  • A copy of signed Power of Attorney

  • Trademark print in jpg format

  • The name, address, postal code and contact person of the applicant in English (we will translate into Chinese under client’s authorization)

  • Meaning of the mark, if any.

  • Copy of the company registration certificate with stamp or signature of the client.

Filing an application with Priority claim

  • A copy of signed Power of Attorney

  • Trademark print in jpg format

  • The name, address, postal code and contact person of the applicant in English and we will translate into Chinese under client’s authorization

  • The designated class and products of the mark

  • Meaning of the mark, (if any).

  • Copy of the company registration certificate with stamp or signature of the client.

  • A certified copy of the filing document issued by the priority country authority. This certified copy should be in original.

Renewal of Trademark / Service Mark Registrations

  • Power of attorney simply signed by the applicant

  • The name, address and nationality of the applicant and the nature of its business

  • The trademark’s filing number

  • Scanned copy of the original registration certificate (just for verification purpose)

Assignments Applications

  • The application forms, should be signed or stamped by the two parties in original, (The client should sign on the Chinese version)

  • POAs signed from each parties

  • Copies of the company registration certificates of both parties with stamps or signatures of both of parties.

PATENT INTRODUCTION & REQUIREMENTS

LAWS

China Patent Law      Download

PATENT SUMMARY

  • Patent applications and patents may be searched by title and patentee name

  • Patents are published in the Official Gazette after substantive examination

  • The patent is published after the expiration of 18 months from the filing date

PROTECTION TERM

  • The term of protection of the invention and utility model patent rights is 20 and 10 years respectively from the date of application

ANNUITIES

  • Due annually on the anniversary of the filing date

REQUIREMENTS

For Filing the Patent Application:

  • The official language is Chinese. A translation of the application into Chinese must be submitted at the time of filing; late filing is not applicable.

  • To obtain a filing date, it is necessary to provide the State Intellectual Property Office of China with the applicants and inventor’s details and application materials.

  • A simply signed copy of Power of Attorney should be provided within two months from the filing date.

  • A certified copy of the priority document must be provided within three months from the filing date of a patent application in China. The title of the priority document must be translated into Chinese.

  • It is not necessary to provide the Assignment Deed between applicant(s) and inventor(s) when filing a patent application

Patent Application for Invention/Utility Model (Convention Application)

  • Name and address of the applicant(s) and the inventor(s).

  • Information of Priority Right (if priority right is claimed).

  • Description, claims, abstract, drawings (if any).

  • Certified priority document (if priority right is claimed).

  • Assignment (if the applicant in China is different from that of the priority application).

  • Power of attorney. (Items 1-3 are mandatory at the time of filing, whereas items 4-6 can be filed later; however, the deadline for submitting item 4 will expire after three months from the Chinese filing date.

Patent Application for Design (Convention Application)

  • Name and address of the applicant(s) and the inventors(s).

  • Information of Priority Right (if priority right is claimed).

  • Drawings or three sets of photographs

  • Certified priority document (if priority right is claimed).

  • Assignment (if the applicant in China is different from that of the priority application).

  • Power of attorney. (Items 1-3 are mandatory at the time of filing, whereas items 4-6 can be filed later; however, the deadline for submitting item 4 will expire after three months from the Chinese filing date).

Chinese National Phase of a PCT Application (Invention/Utility Model)

  • Name and address of the applicant(s) and the inventors(s).

  • Information of Priority Right (if priority right is claimed).

  • Published PCT application documents.