On 1 July 2009, the Intellectual Property Office of Singapore (the “IPOS”) and the Japan Patent Office (the “JPO”) launched a cooperative initiative called the Patent Prosecution Highway (“PPH”) with a pilot period of one year, commencing on 1 July 2009. The IPOS and the JPO have now agreed to extend the pilot programme in its current state for another year till 1 July 2011.
This initiative is intended to facilitate faster prosecution of patent applications as references to earlier work done at one office could reduce or even eliminate the need for subsequent search and examination work in the other office. The initiative is also expected to result in better search and examination as one patent office may check with and rely on the other office for previously unavailable databases.
An article about this initiative when it was first launched was featured in a previous issue of the Allen & Gledhill Legal Bulletin (June 2009). To read the article entitled “Patent Prosecution Highway Pilot Programme between Intellectual Property Office of Singapore and Japan Patent Office”, please click here.