China Trade Mark Office slashing of fees

Published on 31 Mar 2017 | 2 minute read

But is this good news for brand owners?

The Ministry of Finance of China announced that from 1 April 2017, the official trade mark application fees will be reduced by 50%.  The China Trade Mark Office (CTMO) released the detailed fees schedule which shows that official fees from filing to opposition have been halved (see attached chart).

The reduction of fees is in line with the Chinese Government’s IP Five-Year Plan (2016-2020) which aims to elevate China to a country strong in IP assets.  One strategy is to make obtaining a trade mark registration increasingly convenient.  To implement this plan, the CTMO set up two Trade Mark Examination Cooperation Centres in Beijing and Guangzhou, and opened 54 counters throughout the country to receive new trade mark applications.  The CTMO also plans to simplify the requirements for online filing.  

At the end of 2016, there were 12 million valid trade marks on the Chinese register, with 3.7 million new applications submitted in 2016 alone.  From a cost perspective, no doubt all brand owners will welcome lower official fees.  However, another consequence of lower official fees and more convenient ways to file applications is the expected increase in the number of new trade mark filings - which may reach a new peak this year!  Since less investment is required, trade mark squatters are likely to be even more willing to file bad faith applications.  Moreover, since the CTMO is already stretched for time given the high volume of cases and tight statutory timelines to complete the examination of cases (9 months for new applications, 12 months for oppositions), it is feared that the quality of decisions would be adversely affected.  Overtime, improvements will be made, but uncertainty in the short term will prove  unsatisfactory for legitimate brand owners.

 

Notice of Adjustment of Schedule of Fees for Trade Mark Registration

In accordance with Finance and Taxation Document No. 20 of the Department of Treasury and National Development and Reform Commission, the fees concerning trade mark registration will decrease by 50% from 1 April 2017.  The detailed Schedule of Fees is as follows:

 

Charges

Fees

Trade mark application

 

CNY 300 (up to 10 items in one class) CNY 30 (each additional item above 10 items)

Re-issuance of registration certificate

CNY 500 (including fee for publishing declaration of loss of certificate)

Application of recordal of assignment

CNY 500

Application for renewal of one registration

CNY 1000

Late filing charges for renewal of one registration

CNY 250

Application for trademark  review (refusal appeal, opposition appeal, non-use cancellation appeal,  invalidation)

CNY 750

Recordal of change of name/address for one mark

CNY 250

Issuance of Chinese registration certificate for Madrid International Registration

CNY 50

Application for a collective trademark

CNY 1500

Application for a certification trademark

CNY 1500

Trademark opposition

CNY 500

Rectification of one pending application or one registration; non-use cancellation

CNY 250

Recordal of trademark license agreement 

CNY 150

 

China Trade Mark Office

30 March 2017

30% Complete
Rouse Editor
Editor
+44 20 7536 4100
Rouse Editor
Editor
+44 20 7536 4100