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Canton Fair ensures innovation driven development and transformation and upgrading

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At the concluding press conference of the 125th session of the Canton Fair, Xu Bing, Deputy Secretary General, Spokesperson of the Canton Fair and Deputy Director General of China Foreign Trade Centre introduced the achievements of Canton Fair’s Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) protection.

Xu said that IPR protection at Canton Fair is an example for Chinese exhibition industry. After 27 years of improvement, Canton Fair has founded a complete system of IPR protection and trade dispute settlement mechanism for exhibitions, enhanced the awareness of companies on IPR protection and fair and just trade, and demonstrated to the world Chinese government’s position to encourage innovation and protect IPR.

At the opening ceremony of the 2nd Belt & Road Forum, President Xi reinforced that stronger IPR protection is not only the requirement of foreign and domestic companies to safeguard their legitimate interests, but also a must for building an innovative country and boosting quality development. In this session, we will continue to strengthen IPR protection, provide guarantee for innovation and transformation and upgrading.

IPR protection covers all links. We adopt a double-pronged approach: prevention and onsite handling to build a complete IPR protection chain before, during and after the show. We’ve successfully stroke down on infringement and ensured self innovation of companies. Before the show, we require exhibitors to sign a liability statement and clarify their responsibility of IPR protection. We step up on publicity and education via multiple media channels, summarize IPR dispute cases at exhibitions and remind exhibitors. For exhibitors with past record of infringement, we will send a formal notice through our system. During the show, we firmly crack down upon infringement and maintain a sound trading order. Specifically we require various exhibition organizing delegations and chambers of commerce to improve onsite inspection; the Complaint Station standardizes complaint handling procedures, clarifies responsibilities of different posts and establishes responsibility system for the whole process of complaint handling, appealing system for opposition, and collegiate system for hard cases, so that we can find infringement behavior in time, handle the cases quickly and in a just manner. Also we encourage right owners to value professional rights protection, work with regional courts on IPR case investigation and form a loop for effective IPR protection at exhibitions. The Canton Fair Complaint Station handled 377 IPR cases, decreased by 6 over the previous session. We sent a formal notice of criticism for 4 exhibitors involved in IPR infringement and reduced the number of their booths.

Exhibitors’ awareness of IPR protection is enhanced. Canton Fair’s efficient IPR protection has gained a reputation among exhibitors and won praise from many world famous companies. More and more exhibitors now recognize the importance of IPR protection; they understand that IPR shall be used in their market competition and that IPR protection shall be regarded as the “lifeline” for innovative development. More and more exhibitors dare to and are willing to bring their latest product and technology, which creates an exemplary effect and an atmosphere of competition for innovation.

Build a “firewall” for trade security. The Complaint Station handles IPR cases and trade disputes in strict accordance with regulations, clarifies liability and terminates disputes; most parties are satisfied with the result. One exhibitor and an Afghanistan buyer had disputes in implementing their contract. The Station mediated from various aspects and asked both parties to adjust their interests; finally the two parties buried the hatchet and signed 3-year partnership agreement. One Swedish buyer who has attended the fair for more than 10 years said that Canton Fair’s better IPR protection is an important reason for his continued attendance.

Xu said that with concerted efforts the atmosphere of “respecting knowledge and innovation, ensuring integrity and abiding the law” has formed at Canton Fair. Like a credit certificate, IPR protection at Canton Fair provides a platform of secure trade for global trade cooperation. In the future, we will further improve mechanism, enhance IPR protection and service to ensure innovative development of exhibitors.

(Canton Fair Press Centre)