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  • The JPO to Act as a Competent International Searching Authority (ISA) and International Preliminary Examining Authority (IPEA) for PCT international applications filed in Vietnam

The Japan Patent OfficeThe JPO to Act as a Competent International Searching Authority (ISA) and International Preliminary Examining Authority (IPEA) for PCT international applications filed in Vietnam

The Japan Patent Office (JPO) and the National Office of Intellectual Property of Vietnam (NOIP) have agreed that the JPO will act as a competent International Searching Authority (ISA) and International Preliminary Examining Authority (IPEA) for PCT international applications*1, 2 filed in Vietnam on and after July 1, 2012. The addition of Vietnam will bring the number of countries for which the JPO acts as a competent ISA and IPEA to five, including Japan, and it will be the third such country in the ASEAN region, following the Philippines and Thailand. With this measure, the JPO's high-quality examination results will become accessible for PCT international applications filed in Vietnam, which is expected to contribute to creating an environment for ensuring appropriate protection of R&D achievements made by Japanese companies in Vietnam.

1. Background

With an increasing number of Japanese companies creating their R&D bases in Asian emerging countries, etc., their intellectual property activities in those countries are becoming more important than ever. Because of this, it is necessary to create an environment in those countries for ensuring appropriate protection of inventions made at such local bases. In addition, cases of Japanese companies filing PCT applications for inventions made at their local bases with the national patent offices of those countries are expected to increase.

Meanwhile, the JPO has been intensifying cooperation with ASEAN in order to promote further economic development of the rapidly growing ASEAN and to support the business activities of Japanese-affiliated companies. In February this year, it set up the ASEAN-JAPAN Heads of Intellectual Property Offices Meeting as a new dialogue framework, and held its first meeting in Tokyo. In the second meeting to be held in Singapore in July this year, it will further examine specific cooperation measures that meet the needs of ASEAN with regard to facilitation of ASEAN countries' accession to treaties, improvement of their examination and administrative capabilities, and their awareness raising activities. Also, the JPO will dispatch its official to NOIP under the cooperation scheme of the Japan International Cooperation Agency.

2. Acting as a competent ISA and IPEA for PCT international applications filed in Vietnam

The JPO and NOIP have agreed that the JPO will act as a competent ISA and IPEA for PCT international applications filed in Vietnam on and after July 1, 2012. The addition of Vietnam will bring the number of countries for which the JPO acts as a competent ISA and IPEA to five, including Japan, and it will be the third such country in the ASEAN region, following the Philippines and Thailand. With this measure, the JPO's high-quality examination results will become accessible for PCT international applications filed in Vietnam, which is expected to contribute to creating an environment for ensuring the appropriate protection of R&D achievements made by Japanese companies in Vietnam.

3. Future prospects

The JPO will continue its efforts to support the global business activities of Japanese companies by working to act as a competent ISA and IPEA for more ASEAN countries and other Asian emerging countries, etc., and making the JPO's high-quality examination results accessible for PCT international applications filed in those countries, as well as by strengthening its cooperative relations with those countries in the intellectual property field.

*1 PCT international applications: PCT international applications are international patent applications filed under the Patent Cooperation Treaty (PCT). The Treaty makes it possible to seek patent protection for an invention simultaneously in all PCT Contracting States. Since these applications are examined for patentability by the International Searching Authority (ISA) or the International Preliminary Examining Authority (IPEA) designated by the PCT, with the results published, patent offices can refer to official opinions presented therein during their domestic examination of corresponding applications.

*2 When the JPO acts as a competent ISA and IPEA in charge of PCT international search and international preliminary examination of a specific country, the JPO may, if the applicant so desires, prepare the international search report and the international preliminary examination report for a PCT international application received by the patent office of that country.

Release Date

June 27, 2012

Division in Charge

International Affairs Division, General Affairs Department, the Japan Patent Office

Related Information

Regional Affairs / Vietnam

 
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