EU Lists China as ‘Top Offender’ for IP Breaches

Published: June 22, 2020  Updated: July 7, 2020 at 7:29 am EST

The EU considers China as one of the top offenders in terms of intellectual property rights infringement, a report shows.

The biennial report, issued by the European Commission in January, lists the bloc’s trading partners and how effectively they are enforcing intellectual property (IP) protection in their jurisdictions.

According to the European Commission, which coordinates trade policy for the 28 member nations, China ranks as Europe’s “priority 1” worst offender due to the scale and persistence of its IP rights and enforcement issues, which it says hinders the bloc’s trademark and patent owners’ goals. China is the only nation listed under “priority 1.”

The report found that Beijing grants questionable patents and encourages the use of “patent-thickets”—dense groups of IP rights in certain fields of technology—to thwart innovation.

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