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Origiin IP sees Unitary Patent System in EU bringing benefits of cost, ease of filing for Indian pharma

Nandita Vijay, Bengaluru
Monday, June 12, 2023, 08:00 Hrs  [IST]

Origiin IP sees the recent Unitary Patent System in EU having the potential to completely transform patent registration, filing, enforceability and renewal if implemented smoothly for Indian pharma.

According to Bindu Sharma, founder & CEO, Origiin IP Solutions LLP, the cost of post-grant will also be reduced by this single window system thereby making it easier for candidates applying from foreign countries such as India. This system therefore has the potential to transform the patent filing landscape in India.

After decades of legislations attempting to introduce a unitary patent system amongst the European countries, this feat was finally achieved on June 1, 2023, when the European Commission welcomed the launch of European Unitary Patent System across 17 nations of the European Union, representing about 80% of the Union’s GDP, she added.

This is a landmark achievement as this system will significantly simplify the patent processes across the EU borders. The Agreement of Unified Patent Court (UPCA) was signed on February 19, 2013 by 24 EU member states. The legislation did not come into effect until June 1, 2023, due to many political factors influencing the landscape of the EU such as Brexit in 2020 and the issues posed by the German constitutional court with respect to this agreement. Finally, 17 EU countries have ratified this agreement and a detailed legal framework has been laid down to be followed to efficiently execute this system, said Bhavya Sharma, a student of Jindal Global Law School during her internship at Origiin IP Solutions LLP.
The system comprises of the Unitary Patent Protection (UPP) and the Unified Patent Court (UPC) together. The Unitary Patent System will strengthen the EU’s innovation and competitiveness in the patent market by introducing a unified registration and enforcement of patents across the 17 countries that have ratified this agreement. It will provide a “one-stop-shop” for patents in Europe.

It brings immense benefits to the companies and innovators. It will allow them to receive a ‘unitary’ patent for their innovations and inventions, valid across all participating member states. This will reduce the costs of filing separate patents in different countries. The earlier level of costs for renewing patents every 10 years separately in member states amounted to approximately €29,000. With the introduction of UPS, the costs would come down to €5,000 which is a significant reduction which will incentivize companies to file their patents in the member EU nations. Another benefit of this cost reduction is that it will overcome the cost gap for filing patents between European countries and other major players such as USA or Japan, said Bhavya.

The most obvious benefit of this agreement is the time-reduction and is now a ‘one-stop-shop’ for patent registration. There is uniformity amongst the member-states making the legal process streamlined and more effective. For this very purpose, the Agreement also established the Unified Patent Court. It will ensure smooth functioning and increase the efficiency of the patent registration, filing, enforcement and renewal of patents in Europe. This in fact makes the patent landscape more fertile for innovators and new businesses. It will enhance the competitiveness, while also attracting foreign investments into the EU, said Bhavya.

It is a great stride to achieving maximum efficiency and uniformity of patents in Europe. Many governments in the past attempted to bring in this change from 2000, but it is only 23 years later that it has become possible, pointed out Bindu.


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