Czech Industrial Property Office celebrates 95th anniversary

10 September 2014

EPO President Battistelli congratulating Josef Kratochvíl, President of the Czech Industrial Property Office, on the 95th anniversary of the office

The President of the European Patent Office (EPO), Benoît Battistelli, met Czech Minister of Industry and Trade Jan Mládek and other members of government, industry and academia in Prague this week to discuss how to further strengthen the patent system to support innovation and economic growth in the Czech Republic and the rest of Europe.

"Patents are an important driver of innovation," said Mr Battistelli. "We need to make a continuous effort to ensure that the European patent system remains attuned to the needs of companies and inventors, so that Europe remains innovative and can stand up to global competition."

In bilateral meetings with Minister Mládek, the EPO President underlined the constructive and efficient co-operation between the EPO and Industrial Property Office of the Czech Republic.

Speaking at a conference on IP in Europe organised on the occasion of the 95th anniversary of the founding of the office, Mr Battistelli said: "The setting up of the patent office in Prague in 1919 was a decisive step in the creation of a modern system of industrial property protection in this region and the office should be congratulated on this landmark anniversary."

The President of the Czech Industrial Property Office, Josef Kratochvíl, said: "An effective patent system is one of the crucial elements of competitiveness. In this context, optimal balance of interests of individual groups of users is particularly important. We must not forget either small- and medium-sized enterprises or persons that are not involved in patenting: the technical information disclosed in patents is a key tool for their business that is beneficial to society."

In the meetings, Mr Battistelli also addressed the unitary patent, and the positive economic impact this is expected to have on Czech industry.

"The unitary patent system will make the protection of innovation cheaper and more accessible, especially for small businesses in Europe," said Mr Battistelli. "The continued co-operation between the EPO and the Czech IP office will help ensure the success of the new patent," he said.

The EPO and Czech IP office are implementing a range of joint activities including professional training, qualification of professional representatives, strengthening of patent-related services to industry, patent awareness and improvement of patent information tools and services.

The Czech Republic has been a member of the European Patent Organisation since 1 July 2002. Last year the EPO received 291 patent filings from Czech companies and inventors, an increase of 26.5% over 2012.

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