6 July 2011
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Heads of Offices and representatives from Denmark, France, Germany, Japan, UK, the USA and the EPO met upon the invitation of EPO President Battistelli at Tegernsee on 5 - 6 July 2011 for a meeting to consider the state of affairs concerning patent law harmonisation.
The Offices viewed recent developments in all three regions, including US Patent Reform legislation, the revision of Japanese national patent laws, the European Unitary patent protection and the results of the latest IP5 meeting.
Participants agreed that in particular the following issues are key: first-inventor-to-file, grace period, prior user rights, scope of prior art, definition of novelty and non-obviousness/inventive step, and 18 months publication.
All participants recognised the importance of making progress and agreed to take the process forward by means of fact finding and information gathering through a group of technical and legal experts to provide a contribution to a wider discussion involving all relevant parties and consulting stakeholders as appropriate.