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2018-06-05 | All chapters

European Chamber’s Statement on the EU’s WTO Case on Unfair Technology Transfers Brought Against China

On 1st June 2018, the European Commission launched legal proceedings in the World Trade Organization (WTO) against Chinese legislation that undermines the intellectual property rights of European companies. 

Stance

The European Chamber has continually raised unfair technology transfers as a serious, longstanding problem faced by European businesses in China, with both Chinese and European authorities. It is one of the many examples of unequal treatment that non-domestic companies suffer from in the Chinese market.

In the European Chamber’s forthcoming Business Confidence Survey 2018, 19 per cent of respondents report that they felt compelled to transfer technology in order to maintain market access. This was the case for over 30 per cent in certain sensitive industries.

“For many years, some European businesses have viewed technology transfers as the price of doing business in China, but it simply should not be this way,” said European Chamber president Mats Harborn. “This practice starves the market of competition and undermines companies’ basic rights. We hope that this issue can be quickly resolved through the WTO framework.”

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June Yu