Shanghai's newly-released regulations on the protection of intellectual property (IP) rights came into effect on Monday, just over one month ahead of World Intellectual Property Day on April 26, a move that indicates China's determination to further improve the country's business environment to attract foreign investment.
The regulations will be the city's first comprehensive local regulations for IP rights protection, and they were adopted on December 30, 2020, including 46 items covering a wide range of intellectual property rights, such as patents, trademarks, copyrights, geographical indications, trade secrets, integrated circuit layout-designs and new plant varieties.
Noticeably, for those items, the city has intensified its efforts to compensate for IP infringement, and has ordered "punitive damages" for intentional infringement in serious circumstances, Wu Xinhui, chief lawyer from Shanghai Kangming Law Firm told the Global Times on Monday, noting that this item will offer some deterrent effect for IP infringement and help improve the city's business environment, especially in attracting foreign investment.
The authorities will build a unified mechanism for the application of the law, via the publication of typical cases, the compilation of case guides to promote unified law application, according to the items.
During recent years, the city's innovation and creativity has improved. The number of invention patents per 10,000 residents has increased from 28.9 at the beginning of the 13th Five-Year Plan (2016-20) to 60.21 currently. Meanwhile, the number of valid trademark registrations was over 1.73 million, double that at the beginning of 2016.
Shanghai has continued to strengthen IP protection for a long time. Early in 2017, Shanghai's first intellectual property protection center was officially set up in Pudong, a region with many high-tech companies covering a wide range of industries such as equipment manufacturing, which has a high demand for IP protection.