On May 27 2011 the State Administration for Industry and Commerce (SAIC) published a document entitled "Lists of Well-Known Trademarks Recognised through Administrative Procedures". The SAIC's statement shows the recognition statistics for the China Trademark Office (CTMO) and the Trademark Review and Adjudication Board (TRAB).
- In the CTMO's trademark enforcement cases, 289 trademarks were recognised as well known. None was owned by a foreign entity.
- In its trademark opposition cases, 24 trademarks were recognised as well known, of which one was owned by a foreign entity.
- In the TRAB's opposition reviews and trademark dispute cases, 83 trademarks were recognised as well known, of which 10 were owned by foreign entities.
In all, nearly 400 trademarks were recognised as well known through administrative procedures, of which only 11 were owned by foreign entities. The recognition rate of below 3% indicates the difficulties that foreign companies face in having their trademarks recognised as well known in administrative procedures in China.
However, the recognition rate for trademarks owned by foreign entities in trademark opposition reviews and disputes has risen from 9.8% in April 2009 to 12% in May 2011. Given that judicial recognition has tended to be abused in recent years, the authorities are making efforts to enforce a stricter and more regulated approach to the recognition of well-known trademarks through judicial procedures; the SAIC has been revising and completing the Provisions on the Recognition and Protection of Well-known Trademarks.
For further information on this topic please contact Zhang Shuhua at Wan Hui Da Law Firm & Intellectual Property Agency by telephone (+86 10 6892 1000), fax (+86 10 6894 8030) or email ([email protected]).