The Administrative Council of the European Patent Organisation held its 155th meeting in Munich on 21 and 22 March 2018 under the chairmanship of Christoph ERNST (DE).
The Administrative Council noted the activities reports given by its Chairman and by the President of the European Patent Office, Benoît BATTISTELLI. The very positive results of the Office in 2017 were praised by several delegations which congratulated the management and staff. The Council also welcomed the final reports on both the Technical Cooperation and the Quality roadmaps, and a number of delegations expressed their great satisfaction with the achievements and feedback received from many users and stakeholders.
Turning to personnel policy matters, the Council addressed the Office's proposals regarding the modernisation of the employment framework. It confirmed its broad support for the principle of introducing more flexibility and for alignment of the employment conditions between different categories of staff. The delegations further considered that the outcome of previous discussions in the respective governing bodies had been reflected in CA/3/18 and Add.1, and approved the Office's proposals.
The Council further noted the oral reports by the chairpersons of the Budget and Finance Committee and the Boards of Appeal Committee on their recent meetings.
A series of elections and appointments was on the agenda. The Council elected Antti RIIVARI (FI) as Chairman of the Patent Law Committee, as well as Mariana KAREPOVA (AT) and Gerard BARRETT (IE) as members of the Board of the Administrative Council; Otto SCHARFF (NO) was re-appointed as member of the Supervisory Board of the Academy. The Council also decided on the appointment or re-appointment of chairmen of Technical Boards of Appeal and qualified members of the Enlarged Board of Appeal. It also appointed or re-appointed technically qualified members of the Boards of Appeal, in order to fill promptly the numerous vacant positions in these Boards; and, as per the new rules in force the Council also decided on a series of promotions and non-promotions of members of the Boards of Appeal.
In legal matters the Council noted the Office's announcement to defer the possible introduction of User Driven Early Certainty, and to arrange for further consultations, before a new proposal could be considered by the Patent Law Committee in the first instance.