Monday, March 20, 2023

News from China

I hope to have something to say about InterDigital v. Lenovo soon, but until then, here is a post on some recent publications relating to China.

1.  Ling Yu and You Zuo have published Coping with the standards wars:  the practice of the Chinese court, 18 JIPLP 18-29 (2023).  Here is a link (you may need a subscription, however), and here is the abstract:


Over the past decade, disputes regarding the enforcing and licensing of standard-essential patents (SEPs) have been the subject of litigation worldwide, leading to cross-jurisdictional standards wars. Since 2013, when a dispute on the licensing of SEPs was litigated in China for the first time, the Chinese courts have been proactive in seeking the effective resolution of such disputes.


This article introduces the practice of Chinese courts developed in the face of the emergence and prevalence of the standards war. For infringement issues, the Chinese courts are conservative with regard to the granting of injunctive relief to SEP owners and are lenient towards promoting adequate negotiations between the parties. For royalty issues, the Chinese courts support the judicial determination of licensing conditions and are prudent towards the application of anti-suit injunctions.

2. Professor Yu also has published an article titled Permanent injunction on intellectual property rights:  judicial experiences in China, 45 EIPR 154-60 (2023).  The article discusses IP cases (including but not limited to patents) in which Chinese courts have declined to enter permanent injunctive relief in favor of the prevailing plaintiff.  Here is the abstract:


In China, permanent injunction is categorised as one type of civil liability, different from preliminary injunction as procedure institution. Once determined to constitute an infringement of intellectual property rights, the Chinese court supports in principle the request for a permanent injunction by the right holder. In recent years, judicial policy and judicial practice have broken the inherent model, but the restriction of the application of permanent injunction is still an exception. Based on the Chinese courts’ judgments of the past 10 years, this article analyses the application conditions of the permanent injunction, the reasons for the restrictions of the application, and its alternative measures.

3. Also worth noting is Tian Lu’s recent blog post on IPKat titled Supreme Court of China casted punitive damages upon post-settlement agreement repeated patent infringement.  The post discusses a recent decision of the Supreme People’s Court ordering a defendant who violated a settlement agreement, under which it agreed to pay RMB 30,000, to pay punitive damages doubling the award, if I understand correctly, for continuing to infringe.  The post sets forth provisions of the SPC’s “Interpretation on the Application of Punitive Damages in the Trial of Intellectual Property.”  The author also notes that she has a chapter, titled Punitive damages for intellectual property rights infringement in China, in a forthcoming edited volume to be published by IPKat.  I will make sure to get a copy.

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