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Taiwan and Mainland China: Problems and Prospects in Cross-border IP Issues

Undertaking a coordinated effort in a cross-border IP enforcement campaign is a legal challenge. A look at the main issues in tackling IP infringement across the Taiwan Straits.

Issue: March 2004

Keywords (click to search): IP infringement IP violation patents misappropriation of trade secrets counterfeit piracy cross-straits infringement network copyright trademark

By John Eastwood Wenger Vieli Belser, Taipei

IP rights holders looking at Asia-Pacific enforcement budgets often have to make hard decisions about where to take action. Although Taiwan's population is small (about 23 million), it is known to play a major role in financing massive overseas infringement in China and Southeast Asia. Taiwan is still a major manufacturer of fake optical-media products (CDs, DVDs, CD-ROMs), auto parts and high-tech products involving infringement of patents and misappropriation of trade secrets.

Following on the heels of general economic trends, many Taiwan manufacturing operations have packed up and gone across the Taiwan Straits, or to Thailand, Vietnam and Indonesia. For a variety of business and cultural reasons, Taiwanese investment has been increasingly focused on China. In 1999, according to official figures, investment into China amounted to only 27.65% of Taiwanese total overseas investment; by 2002, the figure had increased to 66.6%. Depending on...


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