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Can foreigners apply for patents in China?
Foreigners, foreign enterprises and other foreign organizations with regular residence or business offices in China may enjoy national treatment in the protection of patent rights, that is, they have the same right to apply for patents as their own nationals and thus obtain patent protection. According to the provisions of the Patent Law, one may apply for a patent in China in accordance with the Patent Law in any of the following three cases:
(1) A bilateral agreement between the country to which the foreigner belongs and China provides for the granting of patent protection to each other's nationals;
(2) An international treaty to which the alien's country of origin and China are both parties provides for the granting of patent protection to each other's nationals;
(3) Although the country to which the foreigner belongs and China have neither signed a bilateral agreement nor jointly acceded to an international treaty, the other party provides for patent protection to Chinese nationals in the patent law or in practice in accordance with the principle of reciprocity.