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September 12, 2015

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EU ‘not decided’ on ZTE patent dispute case

EUROPEAN Union regulators have yet to decide whether to wade into a patent dispute between ZTE and New York-based patent licensing firm Vringo, despite a year-old complaint by the Chinese handset maker, the bloc’s antitrust chief said.

ZTE took its grievance to the European Commission in June last year after failing to reach a deal with Vringo on charges for using the US company’s patents, which are necessary for its products to work with industry standards.

The company, one of the world’s largest telecommunications equipment makers, said the dispute dated to 2012 when Vringo bought a series of wireless patents from Nokia Corp.

ZTE is also battling Vringo in courts in the US, Brazil, Britain, Romania and other countries.

Asked whether the commission has decided to open a case, European Competition Commissioner Margrethe Vestager said on the sidelines of an International Bar Association conference yesterday: “Not decided.”


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