The China National Intellectual Property Administration (CNIPA) released an announcement no. 349 concerning electronic letters patents and electronic seals of e-filing notifications. The main point of the announcement is that letters patents in paper form will no longer be issued for patent applications filed online and whose grant publication date is on or after March 3, 2020.

The CNIPA will issue electronic letters patent through the online filing system instead. However, the applicant may still request for a paper copy of the letters patent through the online filing system if a certificate in paper form is needed.

Moreover, as of February 17, 2020, all electronic notifications and decisions made by the CNIPA have already been issued without official seals or providing paper copies. An official notification and decision with electronic seals is still available for download upon a request filed with the online patent filing system. The applicants may also verify the authenticity of e-letters patents, e-notifications and e-decisions through the CNIPA online filing system.