The Chinese government is in the midst of a six-month
Intellectual Property Rights Campaign ("IPR Campaign")
that could provide some much needed help to businesses struggling
with intellectual property ("IP") infringement in China.
The IPR Campaign aims to reduce IP violations related to all types
of IP, including copyrights, trademarks and patents. Companies that
are challenged by IP enforcement issues in the region should take
note of this effort; the Chinese government announced in
mid-December that Chinese police have uncovered close to 700 IP
violations involving approximately $125 million and have arrested
nearly 1,600 suspects since the IPR Campaign began. This is,
obviously, a small step toward confronting a much larger problem in
a booming economy, but it's an important step that signals the
Chinese government's increasing resolve to address IP
The goals for the IPR Campaign are to reduce IP infringement and
the manufacture and sale of shoddy and/or pirated goods. Particular
attention is being paid to pirated computer software, books, video
games, music, video publications, cell phones, designer fashion and
pharmaceutical products. The IPR Campaign is also focused on
decreasing IPR violations online, targeting Internet piracy and the
sale of pirated and fake goods over the Internet. Companies
offering these types of products have the largest opportunity to
benefit from the IPR Campaign. The IPR Campaign has already led to
enforcement actions involving IP for international companies such
as Nike and Louis Vuitton.
The IPR Campaign is the collaborative effort of an array of
Chinese agencies targeting IP infringers at the distribution and
production levels, and it is particularly focused on repeat and
malicious infringers. Chinese Customs, local police and China's
Ministry of Culture are all involved. Their efforts have led to the
seizure of infringing goods, including on-line games and websites
using unauthorized audio and video works, and to criminal liability
charges for infringers.
IPR Campaign Continues Through First
The IPR Campaign is effective through March 2011.
The content of this article is intended to provide a general
guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought
about your specific circumstances.
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