Global landscape of IP law changing

By Emily Tan, Stella Yang, Vivien Hou, China IP,[Comprehensive Reports]

The intellectual property(IP)legal system is the product of economy and technology development. Most of the countries with advanced science and technology have established their IP legal systems at a very early stage and have gradually improved their systems in accordance with their economy development. IP laws have become an important part of the legal system for almost every country, and changes of IP laws or improvements on IP legal framework have brought impacts to the economy, both domestically and internationally, which therefore have attracted special attention of both legal scholars and practitioners.


In 2014, a number of world’s major economies such as U.S., UK, Russia, Japan and India have amended their IP laws on different levels. Taking UK as an example, it has made significant changes on its IP framework, including the areas of designs and copyright, and it has also implemented new measures to improve IP enforcement. Japan is another country where changes have taken place in 2014 with respect to its IP. The Japanese Cabinet passed the Bill for the Act on the Partial Revision of the Patent Act and Other Acts in as early as March, ushering in the revision of five acts, namely, the Patents Act, the Designs Act, the Trademarks Act, the Act of International Applications under the Patent Cooperation Treaty and the Patent Attorneys Act.


Of course, as one of the countries with great economic momentum, China has gone through a fast development in IP as well. The Chinese government encourages the economic transition, emphasizing the important role that innovation has played in economic development. In order to better facilitate innovation and help to build a sustainable economy, China is in urgent needs of improving its IP legal system. In fact, China has been working on revisions of its IP laws in many aspects in recent years.


At the end of 2014, the Cover Story of this issue provides an overview of the IP law changes happened, happening or will happen in the above countries, in the hope of providing readers with a glimpse at the changing landscape of IP laws worldwide.

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