Protecting plant varieties
The first revised regulations on the protection of new plant varieties since 1997 took effect on March 1, empowering agricultural or forest administrations to fine offenders up to 250,000 yuan ($40,175) for infringements valued at less than 50,000 yuan. For damages over 50,000 yuan, violators will face fines of up to five times the value of the produce they sold.
Record patent numbers
According to the Changsha Intellectual Property Office, the provincial capital set a record last year when patent applications and authorizations both surpassed 10,000 for the first time. For two consecutive years the city has ranked in the top 10 nationwide - excluding China's four municipalities - in number of invention patents granted. Its 400 international patents filed through the Patent Cooperation Treaty topped all provincial capitals.
High-rise fire extinguisher
A fire brigade officer in Guang'an city recently received a utility patent on his fire extinguisher system for use on exterior walls of high-rise buildings, the first design of its kind in the nation. Inventor Zhu Xiongjun said traditional extinguishers inside buildings are of little use if the exterior is on fire. His design installed on the top of buildings uses tanks, tubes, sensors and an alarm system to automatically spray water.
Chengdu high-tech park
The State Intellectual Property Office recently named the Chengdu high-tech industry zone a "State-level IP demonstration park", the first of its kind in western China. The local government said the move reflects the successful implementation of the city's IP strategies and the zone's contribution in innovation. SIPO also conferred the honor on nine other industry parks across the country including Beijing's Zhongguancun innovation park. The title is valid until the end of 2015.
China Business Times
Bad 'Apple' stores closed
The industry and commerce administration in Panlong district of Kunming city recently shut down 12 unauthorized "Apple" stores that resembled real outlets. Along with the computer icon's logos and posters, the shops also had employees in the same blue T-shirts as actual Apple retailers. More than 80 enforcement officials took part in the campaign that checked 46 sites in the district.
New agency development
The provincial government recently announced it will assist the development of local patent agencies by issuing guidelines and help in the founding of at least three new patent agencies by the end of 2015, bringing the province's total to 10. To encourage large increases in the number of patent agents and professionals, the government will give each new agency 100,000 yuan and provide support such as training courses and recruitment of professionals.
(China Daily 03/06/2013 page17)