The Japan Patent OfficeThe JPO to Act as a Competent International Searching Authority (ISA) and International Preliminary Examining Authority (IPEA) for Malaysia
The Japan Patent Office and the Intellectual Property Corporation of Malaysia (MyIPO) 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 filed with MyIPO on April 1, 2013 and onward.
Under this agreement, applicants in Malaysia, including Japanese-affiliated companies, will be able to obtain the result of the JPO's high-quality prior art search results for PCT international applications by choosing the JPO as the ISA or IPEA in the request.
With an increasing number of Japanese companies creating their R&D bases in emerging economies in Asia, 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 which ensures appropriate protection of inventions created at those regional bases. In addition, cases of Japanese companies filing PCT applications for inventions created at their regional bases with the national patent offices of those countries are expected to increase.
The JPO has been intensifying intellectual cooperation with rapidly-growing ASEAN countries in order to promote further economic development in the region and to support the business activities of Japanese-affiliated companies. The JPO is now further advancing the cooperation to meet the needs of ASEAN countries in various areas, such as support for fostering human resources, and computerization, as well as participation in international agreements on trademarks and designs, and cooperation in anti-piracy campaigns through certain measures, such as raising public awareness of intellectual property rights.
2. Expanding partner countries for which the JPO acts as a competent ISA and IPEA for PCT international applications
The JPO and MyIPO have agreed that the JPO will act as a competent ISA and IPEA for PCT international applications filed in Malaysia from April 1, 2013.*2
Under this agreement, the JPO will be able to conduct international search and international preliminary examination for PCT international applications filed with MyIPO.
With this measure, allowing the JPO's high-quality prior art search results will become obtainable for PCT international applications filed in Malaysia is expected to contribute to creating an environment which will ensure the appropriate protection of R&D achievements made by Japanese companies in Malaysia.
3. Future prospects
Through international consultations the JPO has been making efforts to expand partner countries for which the JPO is able to act as a competent ISA and IPEA so that the JPO will be able to prepare and provide international search reports and national preliminary examination reports, at an applicant's request, for PCT international applications filed with patent offices in emerging countries in Asia, including ASEAN economies, and other regions. The JPO will continue to strengthen its cooperative relations with those countries in the intellectual property field so as to create an environment where applicants in those countries, including Japanese-affiliated companies, are able to acquire stable patent rights in other countries. To achieve this goal, the JPO will endeavor to support the global business activities of Japanese companies, such as by undertaking supportive efforts in examination areas.
*1 PCT international applications are international patent applications filed under the Patent Cooperation Treaty (PCT). The Treaty makes it possible to seek patent protection of invention simultaneously in all PCT Contracting States.
Since the International Searching Authority (ISA) or the International Preliminary Examining Authority (IPEA) designated by the PCT shows the search results and opinions on the patentability of PCT international applications, each patent office designated by International applicants can refer to the results and opinions during domestic examination of corresponding applications.
*2 When the JPO acts as competent ISA or IPEA in charge of PCT international search and international preliminary examination of a specific country, the JPO may, if the applicant so desires, prepare and provide the international search report and the international preliminary examination report for a PCT international application received by the patent office of that country.
Currently, Japan acts as a competent ISA and IPEA for PCT international applications filed in six countries, namely, Japan, the Republic of Korea, the Philippines, Thailand, Vietnam, and Singapore.
Reference: JPO Further Increases Its Competence to Act in the Capacity of an International Searching Authority (ISA) and International Preliminary Examining Authority (IPEA) for PCT International Applications:
http://www.jpo.go.jp/cgi/link.cgi?url=/torikumi/kokusai/kokusai2/pct_isa_ipea.htm (in Japanese)
March 29, 2013
Division in Charge
International Affairs Division, General Affairs Department, the Japan Patent Office