Opinion: What can we get from CNIPA’s recent press conference ?
Updated 17:00, 14-Jan-2019
Dr. Zhang Nan
Editor's note: Dr. Zhang Nan is a researcher at College of Comparative Law, China University of Political Science and Law. The article reflects the author's opinion, and not necessarily the views of CGTN. 
On January 10, 2019, the China National Intellectual Property Administration (CNIPA) held a press conference to introduce the statistics and related information from their work in 2018. There are a string of different figures regarding intellectual property in China, and this article will tell you about their significance as well as my observation.
First, filings in both patent application and trademark registration application continue to increase in 2018. For example, patent filings numbered about 1.5 million applications. In China, the definition of a patent includes invention patent, utility model patent and design patent.
The headquarters of the National Intellectual Property Administration, Beijing, China. /VCG Photo

The headquarters of the National Intellectual Property Administration, Beijing, China. /VCG Photo

An invention patent is generally regarded as the most innovative among these three because the patent examiners examine its novelty, non-obviousness and industrial capability. Once the patent application is submitted, it will take a few years for the invention patent and several months for the utility model or design patents to be granted.   
Nearly 432,000 invention patents were granted in 2018. This figure was 420,000 in 2017 and 404,000 in 2016, showing the steady increase of invention patents in China in recent years and demonstrating the robustness of the creative industry and the willingness to strengthen patent protection. Furthermore, Huawei and China Petroleum & Chemical Corporation were still listed as the top players to have received the most granted patents in the past three years.
A sign that reads "5G park" is seen inside the Huawei global headquarters in Shenzhen, China. /VCG Photo

A sign that reads "5G park" is seen inside the Huawei global headquarters in Shenzhen, China. /VCG Photo

Second, the rise in foreign patent filings shows the confidence and faith in the Chinese market from foreign intellectual property right holders. In 2018, foreign patent applicants filed around 148,000 applications in China, which was an increase of 9.1 percent from the figure in 2017. Foreign trademark owners filed around 244,000 registration applications in China, a rise of 16.5 percent from the figure in 2017.  
It also means the ongoing tension in trade between China and some country does not actually affect the foreign intellectual property right holders' determination to carry on working in the Chinese market. For them, another set of figures worth noticing in this press conference comes from the protection on Geographical Indications (GI). In 2018, 67 GIs were permitted to be protected, 961 GI trademarks were registered and 223 enterprises were permitted to use the special mark of GI. It is great news for countries famous for producing agricultural products such as wines and fruits.
GIs signal the origin of the products and become a guarantee of quality and flavor. Once their GI is protected in China, consumers will associate the GI mark with high quality and the origin of the products, helping greatly with the sale of the products.
Finally, the total import and export of royalties of the intellectual property rights exceeded 35 billion U.S. dollars. This means the enforcement of intellectual property law in China is working well to make sure both the domestic and foreign intellectual property right holders will receive their monetary rewards for their innovation and creativity.
Two thousand years ago, Confucius stood by a stream and said: “Time passes by just like this stream, not ceasing day or night!” He was referring to how quickly time progressed. The development of intellectual property in China is increasing quickly as well, so I wish more intellectual property right holders will seize the chance and ride with the tide!
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