Chinese courts are nullifying patents of Western firms in industries deemed important for the country, the WSJ reported this week. The outlet cited officials in the US and the EU, who have once again accused China of stealing Western technologies.
The officials claim Beijing is using its courts and patent panels to infringe on foreign intellectual-property rights and help Chinese businesses, adding that the efforts are focused on industries important for the nation, such as technology, pharmaceuticals and rare-earth minerals.
According to the media outlet, a US producer of X-ray equipment had a decade-old patent invalidated by a Chinese legal panel, while an unnamed Spanish mobile antenna designer lost a similar fight in a Shanghai court.
Another Chinese court reportedly ruled that a Japanese conglomerate broke antitrust laws by refusing to license its technology to a Chinese rival.
The conflict is focused on the increasing competition between the US and China for technological and economic superiority. The US has placed an ever-growing series of restrictions on China’s technological industries. In October, Washington banned chip exports to China.
Beijing, in turn, has accused its rival of politicizing science and technology in order to protect US leadership in those industries. While Washington has repeatedly accused China of stealing US technologies and misappropriating them for military use.