China's Bid For WIPO Fails, But Beijing's U.N. Plan is Still on Track

China's Bid For WIPO Fails, But Beijing's U.N. Plan is Still on Track

Malaysia Sun-International·2020-03-06 03:42

Singapore's candidate defeated China's on Thursday to win a leadership contest at the United Nations' World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO), as Beijing continues to jockey for control and influence at the U.N.Daren Tang, 47, who is the current CEO of Singapore's intellectual property office, now looks set to take over from Australia's Francis Gurry as head of WIPO.China's Wang Binyang -- who would have been the first woman to hold the post -- had been among five shortlisted candidates for the post, but Tang beat Wang by 55 committee votes to 28. His appointment must still be approved by the U.N. agency's general assembly, but this will likely be a formality.The campaign for WIPO chief saw top U.S. officials speak out against China's candidate on the grounds that Beijing has stolen intellectual property in the past.WIPO has a large income generated by corporate fees for its patent and trademarks registration service.China's ambassador in Geneva Chen Xu denied that the result was a defeat for the Chinese government, which has been actively extending its overseas power and influence since President Xi Jinping took power in 2012."The whole process, I think, is a very strong indication of China's readiness to make more contributions to the international community," Chen told reporters, adding: "We tried our best."Gurry told RFA that China's massive infrastructure investment program in developing countries in recent years has made it far easier for Beijing to lobby to support its own interests in international bodies.He said China has reproduced its lobbying and vote-seeking strategy across a number of international organizations, with considerable success.China has now seen its nationals rise to the top job in four U.N. agencies: Qu Dongyu at the Food and Agriculture Association (FAO); Fang Liu at the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO); Zhao Houlin at the International Telecommunications Union (ITU); and Li Yong at the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO).Fox guarding the henhouse


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