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Foshan, China Government to Subsidize Invalidation of U.S. Patents

On October 19, 2022 the Foshan Intellectual Property Protection Center in Guangdong Province, China, announced that it would provide local enterprises with up to 2 million RMB (~$277 thousand USD) for overseas intellectual property protection.  Per the announcement, the updated Measures will subsidize 50% of the cost of IP rights protection with the caps greatly increased. The Measures cover IP litigation (both as plaintiff and defendant), patent invalidation, administrative investigations, and trademark squatting complaints.

The Measures provide for different reimbursement caps based on country where the dispute takes place. 

For litigation, Foshan will subsidize up to 2 million RMB for the United States, United Kingdom, Japan, and the European Union but only 1 million RMB for other jurisdictions. For trademark squatting and invalidation, Foshan will subsidize up to 300 thousand RMB for the United States, United Kingdom, Japan, and the European Union but only 150 thousand RMB for other jurisdictions.

Only overseas intellectual property disputes that occurred before April 21, 2021 and have not yet been concluded by April 21, 2021 or overseas intellectual property disputes initiated after April 21, 2021 are eligible for the subsidies.

Foshan states that 

The implementation of the “Measures” has greatly reduced the cost of enterprises’ overseas rights protection or disputes, and helped to resolve the current situation of “unable to cope with” and “afraid to respond” to overseas intellectual property disputes due to “high costs” and provides strong support for enterprises to “go overseas.”

Unknown right now is whether Foshan will subsidize an Amazon Patent Evaluation Express (APEX) dispute (I suspect not) or whether a foreign company with a branch in Foshan will be entitled to the subsidies.

The announcement is available here (Chinese only). Further information and forms for applying for the subsidies are available here (Chinese only).

Principal, and Director of the China Intellectual Property Practice

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