The trademark office of China's State Administration for Industry and Commerce has not issued a single trademark registration certificate in more than seven months, as it lacks the "paper" used to print them. Beijing Youth Daily commented on Monday:

The trademark registration certificate means a lot to a brand and the enterprise that owns it, as relevant products cannot enter the market without it. It also offers enterprises protection for their intellectual properties.

That the trademark authorities have failed to issue registration certificates for seven months without informing all parties concerned has not only caused considerable losses to the waiting enterprises, but also showcased inefficiency and dereliction of duty on the part of authorities.

In its latest response to the "lack of papers", which began last August, the trademark office blamed the bureaucratic red tape involved in the purchase of the paper and the "unsuccessful communications" between relevant departments.

Although it has promised to destock the certificate inventory by the end of May, the truth is, it could have responsibly explained to the public and the enterprises why the lack of printing materials was so serious as to prevent the issuance of registration certificates for over half a year. Such bureaucratic procrastination, which mirrors its inefficiency in serving the public, may deal a blow to the credibility and image of governments at all levels, especially as the country is working hard to promote entrepreneurship, mass innovation and new governance.

It is estimated that at least 10,000 new enterprises apply for trademark registrations on a daily basis, which requires the trademark authorities to rapidly improve the service they provide.

Therefore, on the one hand, they have to make sure that all eligible trademark applicants receive their certificates as promised, and the incompetent officials are held accountable. On the other, they should also bear in mind their responsibility to serve the public, and not rely on the media to remind them of their duty.

Source: China Daily