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The graph below shows the number of products delivered by the EPO examiners by search, examinations and oppositions. The total number of products delivered by EPO examiners grew by 4.6% in 2017 to 414 269.
|Searches on behalf of
|International preliminary examinations2||
Anyone may oppose a European patent within a period of nine months from the publication of the grant. The opposition rate (proportion of patents which are opposed among those for which this nine months delay expired during the reported period) was 3,7%. In 2017 the EPO issued some 4 070 opposition decisions1, in 73% of the cases the patents were upheld either as granted or in an amended form.
This graph shows the level of stock in months of work across the entire patent granting process. The EPO has managed to reduce the stock by 27% in the past 3 years, bringing it to just under 20 months.