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Last Updated: Friday, 10 March 2006, 15:18 GMT
China to open anti-piracy court
Chinese officials seizing pirated music
Music is just one example of fake goods in China
China is to create a court to focus on enforcing intellectual property rights, as sales of pirated goods rocket.

The Supreme Court has named a Judicial Court of Intellectual Property to address cases throughout the country, said Sun Huapu, a court spokesman.

China's burgeoning fake goods market is causing tension with the US, which has said it forfeits up to $3.8bn (2.19bn) in lost sales annually.

China has also launched a website making piracy cases public.

China is considered the biggest producer of imitation goods, incorporating a wide range of goods, from luxury clothes to films and even books.

Last year, more than 700 people were convicted in China in 505 criminal product piracy cases, said Mr Sun.

Supreme Court judge Jiang Zhipei, who deals with product piracy cases, urged foreign companies to assist in getting cases to court.

"If we don't get them into courts, we can't judge them," he said.

The vast majority of product piracy cases - 95% - involve imitation of Chinese products by Chinese companies.

Other measures to help tackle piracy should include better training of local judges and giving more courts the option to hear such cases, said Mr Sun.

Last month, China shut 76 websites and demanded that 137 remove illegal material as part of measures to stem online piracy, the official Xinhua news agency said.

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