The 2018 China Forum on Criminal IP Protection (hereinafter referred to as the Forum), hosted by the Quality Brands Protection Committee of China Association of Enterprises with Foreign Investment (QBPC) and supported by IPKey China, was held in Suzhou on 11 July 2018. More than 300 guests gathered in Suzhou to discuss criminal IP protection issues, including Gao Feng, the Director General of the Economic Crime Investigation Department of the Ministry of Public Security of the People’s Republic of China (ECID/MPS), Lu Zhengmin, the Director General of the Office of the National Leading Group on the Fight Against IPR Infringement and Counterfeiting (NLGO), Zhang Jingli, the Deputy Director General of ECID/ MPS, Chang Heping, the Deputy Chief of the Public Security Department of Jiangsu Province, leaders and representatives from the Supreme People's Court, the General Administration of Customs, P.R. China, the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO), the Interpol, the European Union Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO), the US Department of Justice, the US Consulate General Shanghai, the UK Embassy in China, the Australian Embassy in China, the Vietnam Embassy in China, the Spanish National Police Force, the Customs of Italy, the Global Anti-Counterfeiting Group (GACG), the International Anti-Counterfeiting Coalition (IACC), and the International Trademark Association (INTA), as well as representatives of member companies of QBPC.
ECID/ MPS provided guidance and assistance for the Forum, gave professional advice involving the subject matter, and sent over 130 police staff from 31 provinces and municipalities across the country to attend the Forum.
In fighting against IP offenses, Chinese police took the lead in proposing to strengthen police-business cooperation and put this into action by hosting a workshop on IP infringement investigation for economic crime investigation units across the country in Qingdao, Shandong Province, in April 2002, and QBPC was invited to and attended this event to kick off the China Forum on Criminal IP Protection and create a close police-business collaboration. Forums were held consecutively in the years of 2003, 2004, 2005…, and now this is the 10th Forum. Following are photos of various forums held in the previous years:
Workshop on IP Infringement Investigation for Economic Crime Investigation in 2002
2004 China Forum on Criminal IP Protection
2007 China Forum on Criminal IP Protection
2012 China Forum on Criminal IP Protection
2017 China Forum on Criminal IP Protection
The 2018 China Forum on Criminal IP Protection focused on these themes: Collaboration, Innovation, Win-Win, i.e. government-business cooperation and multilateral cooperation; application of big data in innovative anti-counterfeiting; and an increase in attention to IP infringement’s new trends, changes, and issues to achieve a win-win result. Within such a subject matter, there are five special sessions:
Session1: International Experience and New Trend for Criminal IP Protection
Session 2: New Trend in Criminal IP Protection in China
Session 3:Criminal IP Protection in the Era of Big Data
Session 4:The social cooperation and governance on IP protection
Session 5: China-EU Collaboration on IP Law Enforcement
As a China-EU IP cooperation program managed by the EUIPO, IPKey China jointed the Forum as a supporter. The Forum initiates a favorable environment for further cooperation between EU enforcement departments, right holders, and the Chinese police. It also conforms to the mission of the exchange platform established by QBPC.
Michael Ding, Head of IP Operation for ABB in Asia, the Middle East and Africa Region and Vice Chairman of QBPC
Michael Ding, Head of IP Operation for ABB in Asia, the Middle East and Africa Region and Vice Chairman of QBPC moderated the opening ceremony and pointed out various IP protection measures and he emphasized that the criminal protection has a self-evident role and has been a top concern for right holders. With joint efforts, we have been accomplishing a great deal and moving forward in criminal IP protection. However, there are still many issues that require joint discussion, collaboration, and innovation in order to obtain a win-win result.
Gao Feng, Director General of the Economic Crime Investigation Department of the Ministry of Public Security (ECID/MPS)
Director General Gao started an excellent speech with “three questions”: From 2002, when the Forum was inaugurated, to 2018, what have the Chinese police done for IP protection? What are we doing now? What can we do in the future? These three questions contain the past, present, and future of the Chinese police’s IP protection efforts. Over the past 16 years, the Chinese police have been more aware of the risks arising from IP infringement and have been more firm in the fight against various IP infringements.
According to Mr. Gao, the era of big data has provided technical prerequisites for data-based crime description and investigation, and it is imperative to improve the professional capability to match with the mission of criminal protection in the new era.
Mr. Gao stressed that it is necessary to protect innovation and to protect in an innovative manner. In an era where information and data prevail, Chinese police shall keep up with the times by making use of big data and other hi-tech means to combat IP infringement. Director General Gao vividly compared such hi-tech means with CT and NMR in order to be able to penetrate and see through all criminal acts and offenders.
IP crime is a global issue, and Mr. Gao appealed to face the supply and demand of fake and shoddy products and to understand that China is a victim as well. Chinese police have worked with police authorities in relevant countries to deliver joint combat against IP infringement, and the Chinese police are looking forward to more effective international cooperation with more countries.
Director General Gao avowed to work with relevant departments to refine IP related criminal regulations, to significantly raise the cost of illegal acts, and to give full play to the deterrent role of laws and regulations.
Lu Zhengmin, Director General of the NLGO
According to Lu Zhengmin, Director General of the NLGO, the Chinese government has been highly concerned with the fight against IP infringement and counterfeiting and IP protection. In particular, since the 18th CPC National Congress, the CPC Central Committee and the State Council have made a number of decisions and arrangements based on IP protection and the fight against IP infringement and counterfeiting. In this respect, China has accomplished a lot and has acted as a responsible world power by effectively curbing rampant counterfeiting, safeguarding the fair competitive market order, and protecting legitimate rights of consumers and right holders. Ms. Lu emphasized that the NLGO will act as an overall coordinator and take forceful measures to consistently fight against IP infringement and counterfeiting and protect intellectual property, to evict infringers out of the market, and to make sure speculators have nothing to gain and that innovators are properly motivated.
Chang Heping, Deputy Chief of the Public Security Department of Jiangsu Province
As pointed out by Chang Heping, Deputy Chief of the Public Security Department of Jiangsu Province, the Public Security Authority of Jiangsu Province has attached great importance to IP protection by setting up a task force for IP crime investigation in 2016 in order to coordinate the fight against IP infringement and investigate IP cases across the province. The police force has worked holistically and formed a special investigation system to combat against IP infringement across the province. The Jiangsu Provincial Public Security Authority has maintained a close collaboration with industry & commerce, customs, and other administrative departments, procuratorates, courts, and other judicial departments, QBPC, Philips, and other well-known Chinese and foreign companies. They have also strengthened judicial cooperation, technical exchange, and personnel training, consistently improving criminal IP protection and successfully concluding several influential criminal cases. The public security authority of Jiangsu Province has taken this Forum as a chance to continue improving the Province’s capability for fighting IP crimes, to spare no effort in promoting innovative IP protection, and to make a greater contribution to the high-quality development of Jiangsu.
Günther Marten, Minister Counselor, EUIPO IP Attaché, Delegation of the European Union to China
Günther Marten was pleased to attend the forum on behalf of the European Union Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO) and the Delegation of the European Union to China. EUIPO runs IP Key China, a Sino-Euro IP project and also the co-organizer of this forum. Günther Marten’s address focused on understanding and mastering four psychological states of infringers and called for increasing deterrence from the law enforcement and judiciary authorities. Günther Marten emphasized that IP Key China would fully support China’s efforts to fight against criminal IP infringements.
Lv Guoqiang, China Region Advisor to the WIPO
Mr. Lv Guoqiang, China Region Advisor to the WIPO, made use of specific data to explain IP protection achievements made by China over the years: according to the Global Innovation Index 2018 published by the WIPO, China moved upward to No. 17 in the GII ranking; in 2017, China received 1.382 million invention patent applications, being the world’s No. 1 for 7 consecutive years; China became the third largest user of the Madrid system; and also one of the top 15 trademark applications by country of origin, China had the fastest growth. Mr. Lv further pointed out that the Chinese court has used information technology to promote judicial justice and has provided valuable experience for other countries. The WIPO is aware of and respectful of the development and progress of China’s judicial system, and in particular, how China’s judicial IP protection making the world see confidence and hope. The WIPO will further strengthen the liaison with Chinese judicial authority to facilitate IP protection in a deeper and more effective manner.
Ovidiu-Sever Ene, Criminal Intelligence Analyst, Illicit Goods and Global Health Program of International Criminal Police Organization (INTERPOL)
Ovidiu-Sever Ene, Criminal Intelligence Analyst, Illicit Goods and Global Health Program of International Criminal Police Organization (INTERPOL),welcomed the guests present at the Forum to visit the Interpol’s database, and, according to him, the Interpol has close cooperation with customs, intellectual property offices, police authorities, and other competent departments, and offers IP enforcement courses to IP-related departments and persons via IIPCIC, its online college.
Ovidiu-Sever Ene particularly mentioned China as a very important and indispensable part of the Interpol and indicated that the Interpol hopes to strengthen cooperation with China to learn about more innovative means of investigation. Finally, Ovidiu-Sever Ene pointed out that organized crime is a major feature of IP infringement while varying national legislations is a great challenge in the practice of combat against IP crimes and governing law in cross-border cases is a very serious issue.
Michael Mangelson, Consul and IP Attaché of U.S. Consulate General Shanghai
In his speech, Michael Mangelson, Consul and IP Attaché of U.S. Consulate General Shanghai, recognized and praised the efforts of the Shanghai People’s Procuratorate and People’s Procuratorate of Beijing Municipality to enhance the transparency of publicly prosecuted IP cases and to support right holders to participate in relevant criminal proceedings. Michael appealed to impose a heavier penalty and establish deterrent enforcement and judicial mechanisms to escort economic development and innovation. Let’s remember: if you dream it, you can do it !
John Anderson, Chairman of Global Anti-counterfeiting Group (GACG)
John Anderson, Chairman of Global Anti-counterfeiting Group (GACG), firstly expressed his congratulations to the ECID/MPS for its achievements and showed support for the China-EU IP cooperation program. John pointed out that the Global Anti-Counterfeiting Group is an inter-state and inter-regional organization for anti-counterfeiting and IP enforcement and that QBPC and IACC are its active members. He emphasized that hopefully, big data will become the most powerful helper and tool in the fight against infringement and counterfeiting.
Robert Barchiesi, President of International Anti-Counterfeiting Coalition (IACC)
Robert Barchiesi, President of International Anti-Counterfeiting Coalition (IACC), said that IACC is one of the world’s largest organizations established to protect consumers and brand names from counterfeiting and infringement, and now consists of more than 250-member companies. Cooperation has been IACC’s top priority over the past decade. Counterfeiting and infringement is a complicated global issue and is impossible to be resolved by any single industry, organization, or government. The IACC is looking forward to creating close collaboration with the MPS and further deepen their cooperation with QBPC.
Jack Chang, Vice Chairman of CAEFI and QBPC Chairman
Jack Chang, Vice Chairman of CAEFI and QBPC Chairman, pointed out that as early as 2001, a Chinese police officer called for close police-business cooperation since he was aware that counterfeiting and infringement might have a serious impact on China’s national economic security. In April 2002, a training workshop on IP infringement investigation for economic crime investigation units across the country was held in Qingdao, Shandong Province, and QBPC attended it as the representative of right holders to formally kick off police-business cooperation. For years, with the support and push from ECID/MPS and relevant divisions, police and businesses have been working together to push forward various pioneering matters as well as effective enforcement.
IP protection requires government-business cooperation and multilateral collaboration. The Shanghai People’s Procuratorate and People’s Procuratorate of Beijing Municipality have confirmed right holders as victims in publicly prosecuted IP cases to support right holders to participate in relevant proceedings and enhance the efficiency and transparency of public prosecution and the trial of criminal cases.
The China-EU IP cooperation program was inaugurated in 2001 with the purpose to support the Chinese government in establishing a modernized IP system and promoting bilateral trade. As Phase III of the program, IPKey China supported the 2018 China Forum on Criminal IP Protection. The Forum creates a favorable condition for further cooperation between EU enforcement departments, right holders, and Chinese police, and also conforms to the mission of the exchange platform established by QBPC.
Chairman Jack Chang particularly mentioned that thanks to the vigorous support from leaders of the ECID/MPS, QBPC has established close cooperation with local public security authorities. In 2005, QBPC signed the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) on Strengthening Criminal IP Protection Cooperation with the Economic Crime Investigation Corps of Shanghai Municipal Public Security Bureau, and thereafter, QBPC successively signed a MOU with public security authorities in Sichuan, Zhejiang, Guangdong, Shandong, and Heilongjiang. Over the past decade, police-business cooperation has been steadily moving forward. During the 2018 China Forum on Criminal IP Protection on 11 July, QBPC Chairman Jack signed the MOU on Strengthening Criminal IP Protection Cooperation with Zhao Jian, Captain of the Economic Crime Investigation Department of the Public Security Department of Jiangsu Province, agreeing to set up a cooperation liaison team, strengthen exchange and cooperation, establish collaboration mechanisms for the fight against IP crimes, carry out in-depth exchange and discussion, and to work together to step up publicity and education.
Jack Chang (left), Vice Chairman of CAEFI and Chairman of QBPC, and Zhao Jian (ight), Captain of the Economic Crime Investigation Department of the Public Security Department of Jiangsu Province, singing the MOU on Strengthening Criminal IP Protection Cooperation with
Jack Chang (left), Vice Chairman of CAEFIand Chairman of QBPC, Gao Feng (center), Director General of the Economic Crime Investigation Department of the Ministry of Public Security (MPS/ECID), and Zhao Jian (right), Captain of the Economic Crime Investigation Department of the Public Security Department of Jiangsu Province
Group photo following the signing of the MOU