The protection of intellectual property in the People's Republic of China has been of great importance at least since the opening of the market in 1978. Although the first efforts to protect the rights of individuals in the field of copyright were made as early as the Qing Dynasty, it took until the 1990s before a copyright law was finally implemented. While the law is already quite advanced in the books, effective enforcement of rights has faced and continues to face many hurdles. Due to that and also to take account of technological progress and further developments at the international level, China's copyright law has been undergoing a reform process since 2012 which resulted in the 2020 Amendment of the Chinese Copyright Law that takes effect on 1 June 2021. This work focuses on the legal historical development of copyright law in the People's Republic of China with the aim of understanding the current reform of the Copyright Law and the problems China has faced and is facing.
Philine-Luise Pulst is a lawyer in the fields of intellectual property law and life sciences with the international law firm CMS in Hamburg.