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Brazil and the EPO Strengthen Patent Ties

Source: Grill IP patents news

brazil-flag-epo-patent-coordinationBrazil’s Ministry of Industry, Foreign Trade and Service and the European Patent Office (EPO) have recently committed to increase their co-operation as it relates to patent processing. This agreement was expressed in a joint statement signed by Brazilian Industry Minister Marcos Pereira and EPO VP Raimund Lutz. This declaration permits the EPO to renew its bi-lateral co-operation program with Brazil, while initiating a conversation on the development of a joint Patent Prosecution Highway (PPH) pilot program.

    The PPH pilot allows Brazilian and European patent applicants to request an accelerated patent prosecution at Brazil’s National Institute of Industrial Property (INPI) or at the EPO, which is expected to reduce costs and speed up the process for companies in both regions. As Latin America’s largest economy, Brazil’s trade with Europe constitutes over a third of the EU’s total trade with Latin America. Over 600 filings of Brazilian origin designated the EPO in 2015 alone, and over a third of the 33,000 patent applications at the INPI last year were from EPO member states.

    Europe and Brazil have a long history of cooperation, improving innovative environments and increasing patent use in both zones. In 2005, Brazil’s INPI became the very first non-EPO member state to use EPOQUE Net, the EPO’s professional online patent search instrument.

    This enhanced commitment between the two IP powerhouses stands to improve patent processing across Latin America, as the PPH program moves from pilot to fixed.  

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