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Fast-track patent examination launched with Saudi Arabia

1 July 2022 

The EPO and the Saudi Authority for Intellectual Property (SAIP) are launching their joint Patent Prosecution Highway (PPH) pilot programme to enable accelerated treatment of patent applications in both regions. The agreement enters into force on 1 July 2022 for an initial 3-year-term. 

This follows the signing of a Reinforced Partnership agreement in November 2021 and the renewal of an overarching Memorandum of Understanding on bilateral co-operation between the EPO and SAIP in June 2022. 

Under the pilot programme, applicants whose claims have been examined by the EPO or SAIP may ask for accelerated processing of their corresponding application at the other office. The two offices will also share existing work results and data, thereby reducing duplication of efforts and increasing efficiency, leading to reduced costs for users. The PPH pilot programme increases the efficiency and quality of the patent-granting process by enabling the offices to make use of each other's work.

The EPO's PPH portfolio 

In addition to this PPH programme, the EPO has operational PPH pilot programmes with the IP5 offices (the grouping of the world's five largest IP offices, made up of the European Patent Office (EPO), the Japan Patent Office (JPO), the Korean Intellectual Property Office (KIPO), the National Intellectual Property Administration of the People's Republic of China (CNIPA) and the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO)), as well as with the national patent offices of Brazil, Canada, Colombia, Israel, Malaysia, Mexico, Peru, the Philippines and Singapore. 

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