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UK-IPO launches 'China Roadmap' guide

The UK Intellectual Property Office has launched a guide to the protection of intellectual property (IP) in China

The UK Intellectual Property Office (UK-IPO) has launched a guide to the protection of intellectual property (IP) in China.

The guide, which is entitled "China, an Enforcement Roadmap", offers advice concerning Chinese Intellectual Property protection and the enforcement system there.

Aimed at businesses currently or intending to operate in China, the guide offers practical advice on how to protect and enforce IP rights within the current Chinese system, which is especially useful for pharmaceutical firms concerned with protecting patents on their products.

The guide was launched at a business breakfast in Beijing on 11 April by Andrew Cahn, CEO of UK Trade and Investment (UKTI), who said: "As the Chinese economy develops more business opportunities are emerging and increasing value is being placed on Intellectual Property (IP) rights. This new booklet helps prevent businesses from making costly mistakes by providing a better understanding of the Intellectual Property enforcement systems and key contacts in government and enforcement agencies."

From the 2 April the UK Patent Office has been working under its new name, 'United Kingdom Intellectual Property Office' (UK-IPO), which will remain an Executive Agency of Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) within the Office for Science and Innovation (OSI) and be responsible for the national framework of Intellectual Property rights, comprising patent, designs, trade marks and copyright.

In other news, the UK-IPO has piloted a fast track European filing scheme, which hopes to ensure that European patent applications made through the Utilisation Pilot Project will be processed more quickly. This will result in Extended European Search Reports (EESR) being issued between three to six months from the date of request.

The scheme will be open to all applicants wishing to file an EU patent application claiming priority from a searched UK application. The aim of the pilot is to assess the benefit to be gained by the European Patent Office (EPO) in having access to work already undertaken by national patent offices. The pilot forms part of the strategy for developing a more efficient European Patent Network for the benefit of patent applicants.

Sean Dennehey, Director of Patents at the UK-IPO, said: "I am very pleased that the UK Intellectual Property Office is playing a leading role in this project. We very much hope it will lead to significant benefits for users of the patents system here and abroad."

The 12 month project is also being trialled by the Austrian, Danish and German patent offices.

25th April 2007

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