China says criticisms against its IP protection lack evidence

BEIJING • Criticisms of China's intellectual property (IP) protection "lack evidence" and IP infringement is a worldwide problem, the head of China's National Intellectual Property Administration said yesterday.

Critics also ignored the significant progress China has made on IP protection, Mr Shen Changyu told a press conference, in response to a question on concerns raised by countries like the United States.

"Some countries' criticisms of China's IP protection lack evidence and are non-specific," he said.

IP protection has been a topic of "deep concern" in ongoing Sino-US trade negotiations, and China would take further measures to comprehensively strengthen its IP protections this year, he added.

The measures will include amending IP laws to raise the cost for infringements, boosting the efficiency of IP approvals, and providing lower-cost and more convenient IP protection channels, Mr Shen said.

Washington and Beijing last year slapped import duties on each other's products as the US seeks reforms to Chinese practices that it says result in the theft of US intellectual property and the forced transfer of technology from US companies to Chinese firms.

US Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin will travel to Beijing for trade talks beginning tomorrow to discuss issues such as intellectual property and forced technology transfer.


This month, the US administration labelled 36 nations as inadequately protecting US IP rights, keeping China on a priority watch list.

"IP infringement is a global problem that exists in every country," Mr Shen told reporters. "Every country should try to improve their business environment and fix their problems, instead of window-dressing themselves," he added.


A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on April 29, 2019, with the headline 'China says criticisms against its IP protection lack evidence'. Print Edition | Subscribe