Pilot Programme on Patent Prosecution Highway Signed with Japan Patent Office will Facilitate Expeditious Patent Grants To Indian Inventors

New Delhi: The Union Cabinet on 20th November 2019 approved a proposal for Bilateral Patent Prosecution Highway (PPH) Programme between Indian Patent Office under Controller General of Patents, Design and Trade Marks (CGPDTM), Government of India with Patent Offices of other interested countries/regions.

For the first time, the Indian Patent Office is entering into a pilot programme on PPH with Japan Patent Office (JPO). Controller General of Patents, Design and Trade Marks (CGPDTM), Government of India and Commissioner Japan Patent Office signed the Joint Statement of Intent (JSOI) for a bilateral Patent Prosecution Highway (PPH) Programme on pilot basis in presence of Dr. Guruprasad Mohapatra, Secretary, Department for Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade (DPIIT) in New Delhi today.

The programme will initially commence between JPO and Indian Patent Office on pilot basis for a period of three years. Under this pilot programme, Indian Patent Office may receive patent applications in certain specified technical fields only, like electrical, electronics, computer science, information technology, physics, civil, mechanical, textiles, automobiles and metallurgy. Japan Patent Office may receive applications in all fields of technology.

Patent Prosecution Highway will lead to benefits like reduction in disposal time and pendency of patent applications, consistency in quality of granted patents and an opportunity for Indian inventors including MSMEs and Start-ups of India to get accelerated examination of their patent applications in Japan.

In the year 2014-15, around 6000 patents were granted and about 15,000 patent applications were disposed, this figure has increased to more than 15,000 grants and about 51,000 disposal of patent applications in the year 2018-19 and is likely to reach about 25,000 grants and 60,000 disposals this year.

The examination time of a patent application in the year 2014-15 which was around 72 months has already been reduced to less than 36 months at present and the same is targeted to further reduce to 12-16 months by March 2021. In case of expedited examination, the swiftest grant of a patent has been in 67 days from request for examination.

Japanese inventors seeking patent protection in India will now be able to take the benefits of expedited examination in India under the pilot programme on PPH. Faster grant of patents in India will result in more inbound investments by companies and also introduction of newer technologies thereby giving fillip to make in India and increasing employment opportunities. It will also help Indian Startups in patenting in Japan.

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