Between January 2015 and May 2015, there were a total of 252 patent applications that took advantage of the AEP, where 137 were by Taiwanese applicants and 115 were by foreign applicants.  The top four foreign applicant nationalities were: Japan, 55; U.S.A., 28; Germany, 7; while South Korea, Norway and United Kingdom tied at 5 each.  There were 166 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 72.4 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 5 applications, and the first office action was issued in an average of 83 days.  Under Category 3 (i.e., the invention application is essential to commercial exploitation), there were 60 applications, and the first office action was issued in an average of 142.6 days.  Under Category 4 (i.e., inventions related to green technologies), there were 21 applications, and the first office action was issued in an average of 93.2 days.  As for requesting AEP on the basis of foreign counterparts, there were 170 applications, in which 167 applications were based on Category 1, and 3 applications were under Category 2.  In terms of the foreign counterpart, the top four were USPTO, 100 (58.82%); JPO, 31 (18.24%); EPO, 14 (8.24%); and KIPO, 9 (5.29%).

May Wu