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Policy

China rejects abnormal epidemic-related trademark applications

March 19, 2020


Abstract : China's intellectual property watchdog Wednesday said it has rejected more than 300 abnormal trademark applications related to the novel coronavirus epidemic.

BEIJING, March 18 (Xinhua) -- China's intellectual property watchdog Wednesday said it has rejected more than 300 abnormal trademark applications related to the novel coronavirus epidemic.

As of March 16, the National Intellectual Property Administration (NIPA) had rejected 328 trademark applications by individuals and companies, including those using the name of two makeshift hospitals "Huoshenshan" and "Leishenshan" and the virus name "novel coronavirus."

Such trademark applications violate social morality and cause an adverse social impact, according to an NIPA statement.

It also asked local law enforcement departments to inquire with, rectify and punish relevant people and agencies. A total of 866 abnormal epidemic-related applications have been voluntarily withdrawn by applicants.

China has taken the global lead in the number of trademark applications for many years. Data from the NIPA shows that the total number of effectively registered trademarks exceeded 25 million by the end of 2019.

However, some behaviors, such as applying for and stocking trademarks for trade rather than industrial or business use, also exist in the country.

In recent years, the NIPA has shifted its focus from improving intellectual property quantity to quality.

Since May 2019, the industry watchdog has launched a two-year nationwide campaign to curb illegal and irregular activities by hundreds of patent agents and agencies.

It set up an online patent quality monitoring system last year, reporting 38,000 abnormal patent applications and rejecting 39,000 abnormal trademark applications.

The NIPA said it will step up trademark review standards during the epidemic control, to crack down on malicious trademark filings.

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Keyword: trademark NIPA

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