News & Cases from China: May 2021

Published on 29 Jun 2021 | 3 min read

CNIPA and MPS Publish Opinions on Strengthening Cooperation to Improve Intellectual Property Protection

In order to further improve Intellectual Property protection in China, the China National Intellectual Property Administration (CNIPA) and the Ministry of Public Security (MPS) have formulated Opinions aimed at strengthening cooperation between intellectual property administration authorities and public security bureaus (PSBs) i.e. the police: 

Strengthening Cooperation and the Protection of Intellectual Property (the Opinions).

If a PSB becomes aware of infringing or illegal patent or trademark activity it can act on the matter in accordance with relevant judicial interpretations or CNIPA rules, or seek advice on matters such as validity from the local Intellectual Property administration authority. If it seeks advice, the Intellectual Property administration authority shall respond in a timely manner. If an Intellectual Property administration authority becomes aware of an IP offence constituting a crime, it shall report the matter promptly to a PSB or seek its advice. If it seeks advice, the PSB shall respond in a timely manner.

国知局、公安部印发《关于加强协作配合强化知识产权保护的意见》
为深化知识产权管理部门与公安机关在保护知识产权工作中的协作配合,国家知识产权局、公安部制定《关于加强协作配合强化知识产权保护的意见》(《意见》)。

《意见》指出,对于刑事案件中涉及的商标的使用、相同商标、同一种商品、假冒专利行为等认定问题,公安机关可以依据相关司法解释和国家知识产权局制定的商标、专利侵权判断标准等直接进行认定;必要时,可以商请同级知识产权管理部门提供专业意见。同级知识产权管理部门对相关问题无法认定的,该部门应当逐级请示上级知识产权管理部门,或者由公安机关逐级报食药侦局征求保护司意见。

 

CNIPA and SAMR Jointly Issue Guiding Opinions on Further Strengthening the Protection of Geographical Indications

In order to further strengthen the protection of geographical indications, the China National Intellectual Property Administration (CNIPA) and the State Administration of Market Regulation (SAMR) have jointly issued Guiding Opinions on Further Strengthening the Protection of Geographical Indications (the Opinions).

The Opinions state that it is necessary to crack down on the infringement and counterfeiting of geographical indications; strengthen law enforcement, inspection, and daily supervision; and strictly abide by the punishment provisions of the Product Quality Law of the People's Republic of China, the relevant provisions of the Trademark Law of the People's Republic of China, and the Anti-Unfair Competition Law of the People's Republic of China. CNIPA and SAMR will crack down the production and sale of products bearing false or unauthorized geographical indications, and standardize permitted use in marketing, publicity and product packaging. The free use of translations or transliterations of geographical indications, and the use of words such as "type", "variety", "style", "imitation" in connection with geographical indications will not be permitted.

国知局、国家市场监督管理总局联合发布《关于进一步加强地理标志保护的指导意见》
为进一步加强地理标志保护,严格地理标志管理,国知局、国家市场监督管理总局发布《关于强化知识产权保护的意见》(《意见》),提出夯实地理标志保护工作基础,健全地理标志保护业务体系,加强地理标志行政保护,构建地理标志协同保护工作格局,加强地理标志保护组织保障几个方面的意见。

其中,《意见》指出要严厉打击地理标志侵权假冒行为,加强执法检查和日常监管,严格依据《中华人民共和国产品质量法》等有关伪造产地的处罚规定和《中华人民共和国商标法》《中华人民共和国反不正当竞争法》相关规定,打击伪造或者擅自使用地理标志的生产、销售等违法行为,规范在营销宣传和产品外包装中使用地理标志的行为。加强对相同或近似产品上使用意译、音译、字译或标注“种类”“品种”“风格”“仿制”等地理标志“搭便车”行为的规制和打击。严格监督和查处地理标志专用标志使用人未按管理规范或相关使用管理规则组织生产的违规违法行为。加强地理标志领域的行政执法与刑事司法衔接,全方位提高地理标志执法保护水平。

 

CNIPA Issues Key Focus Points for 2021

On 19 May 2021, the China National Intellectual Property Administration (CNIPA) issued a list of key points of focus for 2021, with the goal of achieving steady and high-quality development of IP.

The key focus points include: full implementation of the Patent Law, Guidelines for Patent Examination, Measures for the Administration of Trade Mark Agencies and the Criteria for Trademark Examination and Trial; and the formulation of rules for the protection of big data, artificial intelligence and genetic technology IP rights. The CNIPA also plans to establish 100 Technology and Innovation Support Centers to enhance IP public services.

国知局发布2021年工作要点

2021年5月19日,为了推动知识产权事业稳中求进、高质量发展,国家知识产权局发布2021年工作要点。

其中提出,在加快推进相关法律制度建设方面。做好专利法实施细则的修订,完成《专利审查指南》适应性修改。做好商标法进一步修改调研论证,加强地理标志立法,积极推进《商标代理管理办法》和《商标审查及审理标准》修改。研究制定大数据、人工智能、基因技术等新领域新业态知识产权保护规则。完成100家技术与创新支持中心首期建设目标,健全知识产权公共服务体系。

 

First-Instance Decision Rejects Huawei’s Claim that the ‘Hongmeng’ Trademark is Well-known

Huawei has, over the last few years, developed its own operating system, Harmony OS, also known in China as Hongmeng OS. It applied for the registration of ‘Hongmeng’ as a trademark in China in May 2019. In May 2020, the application was rejected by the China National Intellectual Property Administration (CNIPA) on the ground that the word mark ‘Hongmeng’ was similar to a registered graphic combination trademark ‘CRM Hongmeng and figure’, and that, as a result, there would be a likelihood of confusion and misunderstanding if Huawei’s mark was accepted. Huawei then appealed to the Beijing IP Court on the ground that its ‘Hongmeng’ trademark was well-known and uniquely connected to Huawei.

On 12 May 2021, the Beijing Intellectual Property Court held that Huawei’s claim lacked an adequate factual and legal basis. The evidence provided by Huawei was not sufficient to prove that its trademark was well-known or uniquely connected to Huawei. The Beijing Intellectual Property Court upheld CNIPA’s decision.

法院一审判决维持华为“鸿蒙”商标驳回复审决定
2021年5月12日,华为公司与国知局其他一审行政判决书公布,该判决维持了对华为“鸿蒙”商标的驳回复审决定。

华为于2019年5月申请注册“鸿蒙”商标。2020年5月,该申请被国家知识产权局驳回复审,理由是该申请构成了《中华人民共和国商标法》第三十条所指情形。判决书显示,本案诉争商标为纯文字商标“鸿蒙”,引证商标一位图形文字组合商标“CRM鸿蒙及图”,其中文识部分为“鸿蒙”,引证商标二位纯文字商标“鸿蒙”。诉争商标与引证商标构成近似商标,容易造成相关公众混淆误认。

同时,北京知识产权法院认为华为提供的在案证据不足以证明诉争商标经使用获得较高知名度,从而与华为建立起唯一对应关系,在指定使用的服务上获得了足以与引证商标一至二相区分的显著特征,不会引起相关公众混淆误认。华为的相关主张事实和法律依据不足,不予支持。

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+44 20 7536 4100