Deep & Far Newsletter 2023 ©
The Greater China IP Updates ¡V August 2023
China Increases Patent Output in Green and Low-Carbon Sectors
From 2016 to 2022, Chinese patentees obtained 157,000 green and low-carbon patents in China, but only 21,000 overseas, accounting for 11.6% of their total production. The Strategic Planning Department of the China National Intellectual Property Administration released The Statistical Analysis Report on Global Green and Low-carbon Technology Patents earlier this year. The report said that China granted 36.8% of all green and low-carbon technology invention patents in the world between 2016 and 2022. Also, the report continued with the statement that, despite the overall negative growth in the number of granted patents in the rest of the world from 2016 to 2022, China had maintained an average annual growth rate of 9.3%. China had 13 of the world’s top 50 patent owners, ranking second among individual countries. The investment in the Research and Development departments in companies and universities has driven the rise in patents focused on the technical field of carbon reduction in fossil energy amongst other innovations. Indeed, investments in carbon neutrality technologies in 2021 surged by 180% year on year, and relevant investment value accounted for nearly 14% of all capital in the primary market. However, Chinese inventors need to do more if they hope to boost the number of overseas patents.
China’s National Intellectual Property Administration to Cease Accepting Trademark Applications from Agencies that Failed to Reregister
Over 70% of all Chinese trademark agencies failed to reregister by the end of the first quarter of 2023 after China’s National Intellectual Property Administration (CNIPA) announced earlier this year that it would no longer accept trademark applications from unregistered trademark agencies. Now, after the reregistration process has begun, there are only 18,096 registered trademark agencies of which 16,921 agencies were established agencies that passed the review and 1,175 agencies were new agencies. Previously, in 2022, prior to the reregistration ruling, there were 71,466 agencies in China. In 2022, the sector was growing rapidly with 7,569 newly registered trademark agencies as well as 64 canceled trademark agencies. At the same time, the agency field was plagued with irregular behavior such as malicious trademark registration applications. As part of the registration process, trademark agencies have to sign a letter of commitment to solemnly promise not to engage in bribery or illegal employment, or to act as an agent for malicious trademark registration applications, hoarding trademarks, and other irregularities. Due to this clamp down on trademark agencies, trademark grants have gone down by almost 53% in the first quarter of 2023 year on year.
China Claims IP Protections Safeguards Foreign Investments
The China Council for the Promotion of International Trade (CCPIT) recently published the results of a survey examining the feedback given by 168 foreign companies and 9 foreign chambers of commerce. The survey focused on IP protection in China particularly in the fields of high-end manufacturing, next generation information technology, new materials, conservation of energy, environmental protection, new energy, pharmaceuticals, biotech, and agriculture. Over 90% of the surveyed companies gave a positive answer to whether they were satisfied with China’s progress in protecting IP. Approximately 80% of these companies recognized that China had made steps in establishing and improving its legal system. Over 65% of the same companies said they would use a Chinese firm to handle IP matters. The result of these improvements in enforcing IP protection is that, as of the end of 2022, foreign entities owned 861,000 valid patents, which involved 58,000 companies. Also, foreign entities owned 2.03 million valid registered trademarks. In 2022, the China National Intellectual Property Administration (CNIPA) installed 10 new national IP centers in the country, bringing the total to 97.