In 2015, there were a total of 590 patent applications that took advantage of the AEP, of which 302 applications were filed by Taiwanese applicants and 288 applications were filed by foreign applicants.  The top four foreign applicant nationalities were: Japan, 129; U.S.A., 66; South Korea, 29; and Germany, 15.  There were 388 applications under Category 1 (i.e., the corresponding application has been approved by a foreign patent authority after substantive examination), and the first office action thereof (including examination opinions or final decisions) was issued in an average of 72.2 days.  Under Category 2 (i.e., the EPO, JPO or USPTO has issued an OA and search report during substantive examination but has not yet approved the application’s foreign counterpart), there were 21 applications, and the first office action was issued in an average of 82.3 days.  Under Category 3 (i.e., the invention application is essential to commercial exploitation), there were 145 applications, and the first office action was issued in an average of 141.2 days.  Under Category 4 (i.e., inventions relating to green technologies), there were 36 applications, and the first office action was issued in an average of 97.7 days.