Retail in Asia

In Markets

China defines commercial secrets, tells firms to protect them

China’s government on Monday offered broad examples of what constitutes a commercial secret, following criticism during a recent trial of Rio Tinto PLC executives that its framework lacked transparency. Four salesmen of the Anglo-Australian miner were detained last July on allegations of taking state secrets, and later formally arrested, tried and convicted on charges they stole commercial secrets.

The trial highlighted the issue as a major vagary of doing business in China. Even after the four men were found guilty, almost nothing was known of what commercial secrets they allegedly stole, offering little guidance for companies moving forward.