SHANGHAI, April 24 Proview Technology
(Shenzhen), which is battling Apple Inc in a Chinese
court over the iPad trademark, is the rightful owner of that
mark, a senior official with the State Administration for
Industry and Commerce (SAIC) said on Tuesday.
"According to the ... provisions of the China Trademark Law,
currently Shenzhen Proview is the legal registrant of the iPad
trademark," Fu Shuangjian, a deputy director of SAIC, was quoted
as saying at a news conference in Beijing.
Fu's remarks were the first public comments from a
government official on the matter, and may signal how the court
"This case has a huge impact and the final court ruling
would directly influence who owns the iPad trademark. The
commerce department will (take the matter) very seriously," said
Fu, whose department governs market regulation and supervision.
The transcript of his comments was posted on an official
news website: ()
Apple could not immediately be reached for comment.
The long-running saga over who owns the iPad trademark in
China, pits the world's most valuable technology company against
the Shenzhen unit of Hong Kong-listed Proview International
The tussle culminated in a February hearing at the Higher
People's Court in Guangzhou. The court has not issued a ruling.
Proview's lawyer told Reuters on Monday that the firm is
still negotiating with Apple's lawyers but talks have not led to
a decision. Proview has said it favours an out-of-court
settlement, which usually involves the payment of compensation,
which analysts have said the company needs to repay its
Apple's trademark woes in China are one of the problems
plaguing the technology giant in the country. Apple recently
agreed to work with its key supplier, Foxconn Technology Group,
to ensure better working conditions for Foxconn's workers.