We're proud to announce that the Patent Prosecution Highway (PPH) Pilot Program between us and the European Patent Office (EPO) will commence on Friday 1 July 2016.
The PPH pilot program will take advantage of the fast-track existing examination procedures already available with both us and the European Patent Office for allowing applicants to obtain corresponding patents faster and more efficiently. This program is one of the areas of cooperation originating from the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) by Patricia Kelly, our Director General, and Benoît Battistelli, President of the European Patent Office, at the side lines of the World Intellectual Property Organization General Assembly in Geneva last year.
The areas for co-operation are wide ranging and include commitments on patent examination, data exchange and capacity-building. The activities are aimed at improving the global IP system in the interest of customers to encourage innovation. Under the PPH applicants whose claims have been examined by us or the EPO can request accelerated processing of their corresponding application at the other office. This will speed up the process and reduce costs for you.
The PPH program forms part of our continued efforts to strengthen inter-office cooperation, ensuring the benefits of high-quality, expeditious, and inexpensive examination for customers. This avoids duplicative work by reducing the examination workload for both offices. We will also cooperate with the EPO to ensure the interconnectivity of Global Dossier and WIPO CASE to allow reciprocal access to patent related dossier information.