DS: China — Certain Measures Concerning the Protection of Intellectual Property Rights
This summary has been prepared by the Secretariat under its own responsibility. The summary is for general information only and is not intended to affect the rights and obligations of Members.
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Summary of the dispute to date
The summary below was up-to-date at
Complaint by the United States
On 23 March 2018, the United States requested consultations with China concerning certain measures pertaining to the protection of intellectual property rights.
The United States claimed that the measures appear to be inconsistent with:
- Articles 3, 28.1(a) and (b) and 28.2 of the TRIPS Agreement.
On 3 April 2018, Japan requested to join the consultations. On 4 April 2018, the European Union and Ukraine requested to join the consultations. On 5 April 2018, Saudi Arabia and Chinese Taipei requested to join the consultations. Subsequently, China informed the DSB that it had accepted the requests of the European Union and Japan.
Panel and Appellate Body proceedings
On 18 October 2018, the United States requested the establishment of a panel. At its meeting on 29 October 2018, the DSB deferred the establishment of a panel.
At its meeting on 21 November 2018, the DSB established a panel. Australia, Brazil, Canada, Egypt, the European Union, India, Japan, Kazakhstan, Korea, New Zealand, Norway, the Russian Federation, Singapore, Switzerland, Chinese Taipei, Turkey and Ukraine reserved their third-party rights.
On 12 December 2018, the United States requested the Director-General to compose the panel. On 16 January 2019, the Director-General composed the panel.
On 12 June 2019, the Chair of the panel informed the DSB that it had granted the United States' request of 3 June 2019 , to which China had agreed on 4 June 2019, that the panel suspend its proceedings until 31 December 2019. In response to a query from the panel, the parties stated that the panel should consider this request as one made pursuant to Article 12.12 of the DSU. The Chair of the panel noted that the panel's authority shall lapse after 12 months of the suspension of its work. On 8 January, 3 March and 6 May 2020, the Chair of the panel informed the DSB of its decision to grant the United States' requests of 23 December 2019, 2 March and 5 May 2020, to further suspend the panel's work until 29 February 2020, 1 May 2020, and 31 May 2020, respectively. On 18 June 2020, the panel informed the DSB that following the resumption of its work on 1 June 2020, it had accepted a request from the United States of 8 June 2020, to which China agreed, to suspend its work pursuant to Article 12.12 of the DSU with effect from 8 June 2020.
As the panel had not been requested to resume its work, pursuant to Article 12.12 of the DSU, the authority for establishment of the panel lapsed.
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