Today we continue with the lessons learned during one of our favorite experience of this year: the International Trademark Association annual meeting (INTA 2014), which took place in the amazing Hong Kong.

One very important reason behind INTA 2014 to be held in Hong Kong is the IP rights evolution this world’s region has had during the last decades. As we all now, China is probably the country where Intellectual Property is violated the most, mainly through counterfeiting off goods protected by trademarks, patents and other IP titles.

Of course, Hong Kong’s and Chinese official authorities took INTA 2014 as an opportunity to present to the world all the progress that has been done, the pros and cons of their current situation, and all the work that is ahead, in order to regularize IP law and practice in the Chinese commerce.

Important steps have been taken to reduce the threshold of criminalization of counterfeiting. While there still exist barriers to involvement of Chinese police in the investigation of IP crimes, recent interpretations and precedents of the Court have made it easier to bring IP infringers to the law and make them take responsibility for their action. Thus, we see that the enforcement of IP rights in China is growing towards the better.

Online infringement of IP rights in China was another discussion topic during the meeting. We learned that while there are still no specific laws regulating Internet trademark rights and consequences for their infringement, it is possible for IP owners to protect themselves through the more ‘generic’ channels of civil litigation actions filed in court or administrative complaints filed in the local Administration of Industry and Commerce. Of course, it is mandatory to have your Intellectual Property previously duly registered in the country.