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China to Add Statement of Use Requirement for Trademarks?

In the Letter of the China National Intellectual Property Administration (CNIPA) in Reply to Recommendation No. 2505 of the Fifth Session of the Thirteenth National People’s Congress, CNIPA proposed to require a filing of a statement of use in trademark applications.  CNIPA would be able to revoke trademarks ex-officio for failure to use.

Representative Cai Jiming had submitted to CNIPA Suggestions on Speeding up the Amendment of the Trademark Law and its Implementing Regulations (关于加快商标法及实施条例修改的建议) and replied, in part, that CNIPA wishes to “solve the problem of ’emphasizing registration and neglecting use.’” One way to do this would be allow ex-officio cancelation of trademarks that aren’t being used.  CNIPA stated to solve the problem,

The first is to improve the concept of trademark use and highlight the basic status of use. Second, on the basis of retaining the original withdrawal system, study the feasibility of introducing the system of trademark use commitment and active submission of usage descriptions during its existence. Third, it is proposed to add regulations on revocation of trademarks ex officio. If the trademark registrant fails to fulfill the promise of use, fails to submit a description of the use situation according to law, or improperly exercises the exclusive right to use the trademark, the registered trademark can be revoked ex officio.

No target deadline was listed in the Reply and the “In-depth implementation of the ‘Opinions on Strengthening Intellectual Property Protection’ promotion plan” also did not list a target date to “further revise and improve the Trademark Law of the People’s Republic of China and Regulations on the Implementation of the Trademark Law of the People’s Republic of China.”

The full text of the Reply is available here (Chinese only).



Principal, and Director of China Intellectual Property Practice

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