IP ENSight | 6 December 2017

Patent prosecution highway to advance Africa-China IP relationship

by Joanne van Harmelen
The 41st session of the administrative council of the African Regional Intellectual Property Organization (“ARIPO”) recently took place in Lilongwe, Malawi. Several documents on the administrative aspects of the organisation were discussed at the meeting, including the proposed programme of activities for 2018, and proposals to amend some ARIPO treaties to continually keep them in line with international trends. 

Culminating from the attendance by ARIPO officials together with the commissioner of the State Intellectual Property Office (“SIPO”) of China at the “China-Africa High-Level Seminar on Intellectual Property System and Policies” in July 2017, it has been announced that a patent prosecution highway (“PPH”) agreement has been signed between ARIPO and SIPO. SIPO and ARIPO already have a Memorandum of Understanding in place between them, but establishing the PPH is a significant step forward in collaboration between the two offices. 
 
It is not certain when this agreement might come into effect, but it seems it would be sometime in 2018. It is likely that, when in effect, the PPH will provide a mechanism for accelerated examination by the applicant of the corresponding ARIPO application, once SIPO has allowed the Chinese patent application. 

Additional changes to the Harare Protocol that would allow for delayed or accelerated patent examination were also discussed during the session.  If passed, these may come into effect as early as January 2018. 

This article was reviewed by Rowan Forster, a director in ENSafrica’s IP department.

 

Dr Joanne van Harmelen

patent attorney biotechnology | IP
jvanharmelen@ENSafrica.com
cell: +27 82 770 5396

add to Outlook contacts

print



No information provided herein may in any way be construed as legal advice from ENSafrica and/or any of its personnel. Professional advice must be sought from ENSafrica before any action is taken based on the information provided herein, and consent must be obtained from ENSafrica before the information provided herein is reproduced in any way. ENSafrica disclaims any responsibility for positions taken without due consultation and/or information reproduced without due consent, and no person shall have any claim of any nature whatsoever arising out of, or in connection with, the information provided herein against ENSafrica and/or any of its personnel. Any values, such as currency (and their indicators), and/or dates provided herein are indicative and for information purposes only, and ENSafrica does not warrant the correctness, completeness or accuracy of the information provided herein in any way.

 

feedback

Please fill in the form below to send us any queries, requests, feedback, suggestions - we'd love to hear from you:
 *
 *
 *
 *
 

 

latest news

 

our awards

African Legal Awards Chambers and Partners Rankings DealMakers Awards Global Competition Review 100 (GCR100) Rankings IAM Patent 1000 Rankings IFLR1000 Rankings International Tax Review (ITR) Rankings Legal 500 Rankings Managing Intellectual Property (MIP) Rankings World Trademark Review 1000 (WTR 1000) Rankings
info@ENSafrica.com | level 2 BBBEE rating (South Africa)