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China says it is ready to tighten 'not perfect' intellectual property controls

Key Points
  • China's commerce ministry says efforts to halt intellectual property theft to be stepped up
  • China says effort on intellectual property to aid investments by foreign firms

China will tighten controls over intellectual property to provide better opportunities for foreign firms, the commerce ministry said on Friday.

U.S. Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin (L), Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross (R) and China's Vice Premier Wang Yang pose for a family photo before the U.S. - China Comprehensive Economic Dialogue to discuss bilateral economic and trade issues in Washington, U.S., July 19, 2017.
Yuri Gripas | Reuters

The government's crackdown on intellectual property violations will focus on trademark registration abuse and business secret theft, Wang Shouwen, a vice commerce minister
told reporters at a press briefing in Beijing, adding that China's IP protection was "not perfect" as a developing country.

U.S. President Donald Trump this month authorized an inquiry into China's alleged theft of intellectual property -- the first direct trade measure by his administration against Beijing.

Trump ordering investigation into Chinese trade practices

China's cabinet issued guidelines earlier this month to promote foreign investment, which promised to reduce market entry barriers and offer fiscal policy support for foreign firms
operating in the country amid rising criticism that their business environment is deteriorating.

Details of the measures and a specific timetable for implementation will be announced by the end of September "in principle", Wang said.

Foreign direct investment (FDI) into China fell 11.8 percent in July from a year earlier to 43.88 billion yuan, according to Reuters calculation.