First, China is bound not only by WTO obligations, which bind all other WTO members, but also by specific rules it accepted as part of its accession agreement when it joined the WTO. These rules are contained in the accession protocol and the report of the Chinese working group and are commonly referred to as WTO bonds plus. Article 39 is an important innovation in the field of intellectual property protection in international law. It is “the first multilateral recognition of the essential role that trade secrets play in industry”38 and the “first multilateral agreement that expressly commits Member States to grant protection.” Business secrets. 39 A commentator on the multilateral trade negotiations of the Uruguay Round, who concluded the WTO treaty, said: “The inclusion of trade secrets in the TRIPS agreement has been touted as an important innovation.” 40 Qualcomm`s practices in China were within the provisions of China`s “abuse of dominance” law. In early 2015, after a 14-month investigation, China`s National Development and Reform Commission found that Qualcomm was abusing its dominant position in wireless telecommunications technology and three related basic chip markets. Specific infringements include setting an unjustified patent royalty, collecting expired patent taxes, committing Standard Essential Patents (SEPS) to non-SEPS, imposing cross-licensing without regard to value, and adding other abusive clauses in the licensing agreements22 Qualcomm accepted a $975 million fine. Prior to the adoption of the TRIPS agreement, “the protection of trade secrets was not seen as part of intellectual property protection, but as a general unfair competition.” 41 With the adoption of the TRIPS agreement, for the first time, “undisclosed information” was listed in a comprehensive agreement among the various forms of intellectual property. It is one of the intellectual property rights that must be applied in accordance with Part III of the TRIPS agreement42 But a quarter of a century later, Article 39 has never been used. Article 39 is not the subject of any WTO jurisprudence. In Washington, Chinese trade practices are increasingly supportive of Chinese business practices, as these practices are unfair to U.S. companies in many respects.
But there are differences of opinion on the appropriate response. Can multilateral institutions be useful in this regard? Or is unilateralism the only way? Until the 1970s, the Chinese economy was led by the communist government and isolated from other economies. With political reforms, China began to open its economy in the early 1980s and signed a series of regional trade agreements. China was granted observer status at GATT and began joining the organization in 1986. China wanted to be admitted as a founding member of the WTO (which it would confirm as a global economic power), but this attempt was thwarted because the United States, European countries and Japan had asked China to first reform various customs policies, including tariff reductions, open markets and industrial policies. Finally, I would like to say that China`s accession to the World Trade Organization is a pioneering event that has a significant impact on China, the United States, the WTO and the world as a whole. It has the potential to transform the Chinese economy, its relations with its neighbours and perhaps even (at some point) its political system. It will encourage China to be accountable to an internationally agreed regulatory framework and engage it in far-reaching economic and systemic changes to meet their WTO accession commitments.