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2014 Business Review VII: New Achievements Made on Combating IPR Infringement and Counterfeiting Work

In 2014, the National Combating IPR infringement and Counterfeiting Office (hereinafter referred to as 鈥渢he Office鈥 strengthened overall coordination, organized specific campaigns on IPR infringement and counterfeiting problems, made active efforts to enhance long-efficient mechanism construction, intensified market regulation, promoted fair competition and upheld the vital interest of both enterprises and the masses. In January-November 2014, 148,000 illegal cases in this respect were dealt with by the administrative law-enforcement departments at all levels, 23,000 cases were handled by the public security departments, 16,000 cases were prosecuted by the procuratorates , 15,000 cases were concluded by the courts with 20,000 people sentenced.

I. Special campaigns were organized to create safe consumption environment. In response to the recent tendency of IPR infringement and counterfeiting 鈥檚 transferring to the Internet and rural-urban fringe areas, the office insisted on dealing with the virtual market on one hand, and handle the real market on the other hand. The office formulated and distributed the work plan on combating the IPR infringement and counterfeiting on the Internet, intensified supervision on major online sales platforms, strengthened IPR protection in cross-border e-commerce areas and cracked down on online IPR infringement and counterfeits selling behaviors. On illegal behaviors of producing and selling inferior gasoline and diesel, the office deployed and carried out a specific campaign on checking automobile gasoline and diesel in Beijing, Tianjin and Hebei to purify the environment of refined oil markets. On important farming seasons and consumption peaks on holidays, the office deployed and launched a specific campaign on urban-rural fringe area markets to uphold farmers鈥interests and maintained safe consumption. In July 2014, directed by the Ministry of Public Security, the office worked with the public security departments in Shandong province to uncover a case of selling brand clothes online, dealing with a batch of extra-large criminal gangs of producing and selling counterfeits, and capturing about 60,000 counterfeits like Nike and Adidas with over 100 million yuan.

II. Efforts were made to disclose case information to the public and progress was made in system construction. In February 2014, the State Council approved the Opinions on Publicizing the Information of Counterfeiting and IPR Infringement Administrative Penalties in accordance with law, puting forth concrete requirements on the contents, jurisdiction, procedures, approach and supervision management of case information opening. The office joined efforts with nine administrative law-enforcement departments to hold a national video conference to promote the opening of information on administrative penalty cases. Relevant departments at multi-levels also issued supervision management measures and specific rules and began to publicize case penalty information from June 1, 2014. According to incomplete statistics, in June-November 2014, relevant departments publicized nearly 14,000 pieces of information on administrative penalty cases. To publicize case information is an important part of combating the IPR infringement and counterfeiting long-term mechanism construction, and gives the role of social supervision into play, being conducive to warning lawbreakers, limiting law-executors and safeguarding consumers, and advancing the credit system construction.

III. The cohesion of the administrative law and the criminal law was strongly advanced and the crackdown on criminal crimes was obviously strengthened. The office made active efforts to promote the cohesion of administrative law enforcement and criminal justice from two aspects of system guarantee and technical support. Firstly, the work system was improved, and relevant work regulations concerning case consultation, clue transfer, and result feedback were further specified. Secondly, work was done to promote information sharing among departments by way of technical means, build and operate a nationally connected information sharing platform on the cohesion of administrative law enforcement and criminal justice, realize the transfer of criminal cases online and real-time monitoring, and strengthen the joint forces of combating IPR infringement and counterfeiting. At present, 22 provinces (autonomous regions and municipalities) have built information sharing platforms. Statistics show that the number of criminal cases being transferred to the public security departments by the administrative law enforcement departments went up nearly five percentage points, that being prosecuted by the procuratorates increased 44.1% year on year, and the number of cases that were concluded by the courts increased about 63.7%, being a good deterrent to criminals.

IV. Publicity work was strengthened and exchange channels were expanded. The office strengthened the overall arrangement of publicity work and printed and distributed the Notice on Further Publicizing the Combating IPR Infringement and Counterfeiting Work to make deployments in the respect. On publicizing administrative penalty cases, the office worked with media organizations to come out with special issues and columns before and after June 1, 2014. The website for the campaign against IPR infringements and counterfeits was upgraded with an English version and 38 local sub-stations being added, extending the interaction and service functions. According to incomplete statistics, nearly 20,000 articles on the campaign against IPR infringements and counterfeits were published every month by both national and local media organizations, showing the government鈥檚 firm stand in IPR protection, cultivating the society鈥檚 awareness of IPR protection and creating a sound environment for public opinion.

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