IP Summit: The Unitary Patent and the EPO


Paris was the setting for the 2013 IP Summit, from December 9 to 11, where all eyes were on European Patent Office president Benoît Battistelli, who gave a keynote speech about the “major developments” at the office over the year. WIPR reports

More than 250,000 patents were filed at the European Patent Office (EPO) last year, according to office president Benoît Battistelli, in what was a record year for applications, and the 2013 figures represent a 2.8 percent growth jump on the 2012 filings. Around 93,600 filings came from the EPO’s 38 member states, while the US (64,800), Japan (52,300), China (22,000) and South Korea (16,900 filings) led the way from outside the EU. China contributed 18 percent more to the total applications than last year, while South Korea’s share increased by more than 16 percent.

Just two years ago, Battistelli explained, Chinese applicants were about as prolific as those from France, but today China is responsible for 14 percent more patent applications than the EU country.

To ensure the EPO keeps up with the surge in filings, often related to complex inventions with prior art developments in different languages, work needs to be done, Battistelli said.

ip summit, european patent office, unitary patent, benoit Battistelli