As announced in an earlier Update, the Government of Hong Kong issued a consultation paper on the revison of the patent law in October 2011. An advisory committee was formed to review the comments received from the public and to advise the Government on the planned revison of the patent system. The report of this advisory committee was published on 7 February 2013.
In the report, the committee recommends retaining the current re-registration system of patents, and introducing a substantive examination system in parallel. Initially, substantive examination should be outsourced to other patent offices, while local examining capacity should be developed. Furthermore, the committee suggests to maintain the existing short-term patent system with a few refinements. Other recommendations revolve around the implementation of a regulatory regime for patent agency services.