The past five years have been truly momentous and remarkable for China.
China's economic development has moved up a notch. China's GDP amounted to 121 trillion yuan, registering an annual growth rate of 5.2% during the period.
China has achieved a total victory in poverty eradication on schedule. Close to 100 million underdeveloped rural residents and a total of 832 impoverished counties were lifted out of poverty.
Fruitful gains have been made in sci-tech innovation. The contribution of scientific and technological progress to economic growth exceeded 60%, and the capacity of innovation-driven development was improved constantly.
China's economic structure was further optimized. The average annual added value of high-tech manufacturing and equipment manufacturing increased by 10.6% and 7.9% respectively.
(Statistics from Chinese government work report)
From 2018 to 2022, the courts in China concluded 2.194 million IPR cases of first instance, up 221.1% year on year. Awards for cases of IPR infringement in 2022 increased by 153% compared with 2018.
The Supreme People's Procuratorate and 29 provincial procuratorates set up own IPR procuratorial offices. A total of 13,000 infringers of trademarks, patents, copyrights and trade secrets were prosecuted in 2022, up 51.2% from 2018; 937 cases of IPR-related civil and administrative litigation supervision were handled in 2022, 6.7 times over those in 2018.
(Statistics from the Supreme People's Court work repport and the Supreme People's Procuratorate work report)
At China's NPC (National People's Congress) and CPPCC (Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference) annual sessions this year, "intellectual property rights" (IPR) and "high-quality development" were trending among NPC deputies and CPPCC members. Protecting IPR is protecting innovation, and strengthening IPR protection is an inherent driving force for high-quality economic development, as well as a powerful support for building an innovative country. This year's government work report proposes efforts to strengthen IPR protection and inspire innovation impetus. To further give play to the role of IPR in stimulating innovation, NPC deputies and CPPCC members offered insightful opinions on promoting high-quality economic development through IPR.
"The government work report affirms the role of IPR in inspiring innovation," said Xie Shanghua, a member of the CPPCC National Committee, Vice Chairman of the CPPCC Sichuan Provincial Committee and Director of Sichuan Intellectual Property Service Promotion Center. IPR provides strong guarantee and support for high-quality economic development, and we must strengthen IPR's legal shield, inspire innovation and development with IPR, encourage and promote IPR creation and application.
Strengthening IPR's legal shield is an important basis of creating a market-oriented, law-based and international-oriented first-class business environment. Kou Fang, an NPC deputy and President of Beijing Higher People's Court, said that Beijing courts should spare no efforts to serve the overall economic and social development, provide judicial assurance in terms of pursuing progress while ensuring stability and expanding domestic demand, duly study out the 6.0 version of business environment reform measures for courts in Beijing, and comprehensively improve the quality and efficiency of trials; the court should strengthen judicial protection for IPR, in a bid to create an open, healthy and secure judicial environment.
Accelerating sci-tech self-reliance and self-improvement at higher levels is a unavoidable way to promote high-quality development. Gong Fuwen, a member of the CPPCC National Committee, a member of the Central Committee of the Chinese Peasants and Workers Democratic Party and Vice President of Shaanxi Higher People's Court, said that protecting IPR is protecting innovation. We should strengthen IPR protection in key fields such as core technologies attempting to breach "bottlenecks", emerging industries, seed origins and seed industry, and spare no efforts to inspire innovation; we should take an active part in international IPR governance, deepen exchanges and cooperation, safeguard the lawful rights and interests of Chinese and foreign right holders on an equal footing, and serve the high-standard opening-up.
"Now independent innovation, and sci-tech self-reliance and self-improvement have become a key to the economic sustainability of China," said Yan Dapeng, an NPC deputy, Vice Chairman and Chief Engineer of Raycus Laser under China Space Sanjiang Group Co., Ltd. "Enterprises are innovation participants, protecting innovation is protecting enterprises' enthusiasm, and IPR protection is an important institutional guarantee for innovation protection and simulation," He suggested that China should further improve the IPR protection system, and provide more convenient and efficient IPR protection services for innovation participants in an effort to create a more favorable market competition environment for doing business.
"Data and information are core resources and important production factors in the era of digital economy, but the existing legal system can no longer fully meet the demand for IPR protection in the new era," said Pan Yue, an NPC deputy and a professor at the Department of Finance, School of Economics, Xiamen University. He suggested that China should establish and improve as soon as possible an IPR law and regulation system essential to the development of the digital economy, pay special attention to key issues such as determination of data ownership, boundary of legitimacy for data access and duration of protection, and explore the IPR system applicable to the value concept of the digital economy.
Another CPPCC member with an eye on IPR protection in new areas and new business sectors is Lian Yuming, Vice Chairman of the CPPCC Chaoyang District Committee of Beijing Municipality and Founding President of the Beijing Institute of Urban Development. Referring to the wide application of digital technologies, he suggested that China should establish an IPR protection system and regulation system specifically for data based on new technologies, and take pioneering steps in local legislation, deposit and registration of such data IPRs, to shape some replicable experience first.
Advice and suggestions from the NPC deputies and CPPCC members will eventually converge into a synergy of IPR protection, injecting new impetus for the high-quality development of China.