News story

UK-China Heads of office meeting 2015

UK IPO Chief Executive John Alty visits China from December 7 to 10 2015. Annual heads of office meetings are key for promoting and protecting IP across borders.

During the State Visit of Chinese President Xi Jinping to the UK in October UK-China bilateral relations entered a ‘Golden Era’. Intellectual property (IP) underpins international trade, investment and innovation collaboration so is an important part of the growing UK-China relationship.

John Alty, Chief Executive of the Intellectual Property Office (IPO) is leading a delegation to China for a series of high-level bilateral meetings with his Chinese counterparts and to hold technical exchanges on a range of IP topics. Outcomes of the visit include:

  • agreement of 2016 bilateral cooperation workplans with the major Chinese IP agencies, including the State Intellectual Property Office (SIPO, on patents and designs), the State Administration of Industry and Commerce (SAIC, on trade marks) and the National Copyright Administration of China (NCAC, on copyright)
  • a package of cooperation on patents with SIPO, including an agreement to renew the UK-China pilot Patent Prosecution Highway (PPH) later in 2016, UK use of SIPO’s Cloud Patent Examination System (CEPS) examiner tool and a series of exchanges on topics including global worksharing and IP valuation methodologies
  • a Chinese-language factsheet to help Chinese companies access information on international patent protection, produced by the Chartered Institute of Patent Attorneys (CIPA). CIPA and the Institute of Trade Mark Attorneys (ITMA) will accompany the UK delegation, presenting alongside IPO experts on a range of patent and trade mark topics
  • the publication of a report on the counterfeit goods trade in China and Southeast Asia. The report was commissioned by the IPO and the Foreign & Commonwealth Office (FCO) and written by British IP firm Rouse with input from a range of British companies. The report was launched on December 8 during a global event taking place simultaneously in Beijing, Shanghai, Singapore and London

John Alty said:

I am delighted to return to China for my fourth visit as Chief Executive of the UK IPO at this exciting time for UK-China relations. I look forward to further cooperation in 2016 to the benefit of British businesses in China and Chinese companies investing in the UK.

In addition to Beijing, Mr Alty’s delegation will visit Guangzhou in south China. Guangzhou is located in Guangdong province and is a major manufacturing and trading centre. In Guangzhou the delegation will meet with local government officials and both British and Chinese companies to discuss trade marks, patents and designs, and enforcement of IP in this crucial region.

The UK Intellectual Property Office (UKIPO) has cooperation relationships with a number of Chinese government agencies working on IP. The UKIPO and China’s State Intellectual Property Office (SIPO) signed a cooperation agreement in 1996 covering patents and designs. The UKIPO signed a framework for cooperation on trade marks with China’s State Administration for Industry & Commerce (SAIC) in 2009, and has operated a formal programme for cooperation with the National Copyright Administration of China (NCAC) since 2010. More information on UK-China cooperation on intellectual property is available.