In his Government Work Report presented at the NPC in early March, Premier Li Keqiang stated that China is to initiate a comprehensive intellectual property administrative reform pilot to improve the existing mechanism for IP creation, protection and usage.

A guideline proposing IP administrative reform was released by the State Council in January this year. According to the guideline, a one-year pilot reform of IP rights protection will be carried out in regions jointly selected by the State Intellectual Property Office (SIPO), the State Administration for Industry and Commerce (SAIC) and the National Copyright Administration (NCA).

Under the current system, multiple government departments including SIPO, SAIC and NCA are involved in IP regulation, while at the local law enforcement level the responsibilities are also dispersed in different local agencies. Such mechanism has been proved inefficient and not strong enough to protect IP rights. To address this problem, the guideline introduces an integrated enforcement mechanism under the pilot program.