Cabinet approves Patent Prosecution Highway programme

Union Cabinet chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi has approved the proposal for adoption of Patent Prosecution Highway (PPH) programme. It will be adopted by Indian Patent Office (IPO) under Controller General of Patents, Designs & Trade Marks, India (CGPDTM), Union Ministry of Commerce and Industries with patent offices of various other interest countries or regions.

Patent Prosecution Highway (PPH) programme

What is Patent Prosecution Highway (PPH)? It is set of initiatives for providing accelerated patent prosecution procedures by sharing information between some patent offices. It also permits each participating patent office to benefit from work previously done by other patent office, with goal of reducing examination workload and improving patent quality.

PPH Programme: It will initially commence between Indian Patent Office (IPO) and Japan Patent Office (JPO) on pilot basis for a period of three years only.  Under it, IPO may receive patent applications on certain specified technical fields only viz. Electronics, Computer Science, Electrical, Information Technology (IT), Physics, Civil, Mechanical, Textiles, Metallurgy and Automobiles while JPO may receive applications in all fields of technology.

Extension and Implementation: Its ambit may be extended in future, as decided by Union Commerce & Industry Minister.  The patent offices will frame their own guidelines for implementation of the programme.

Benefits of PPH programme for Indian IP office: (i) Reduce time to dispose patent applications. (ii) Reduce pendency of patent applications. (iii) Improve quality of search and examination of patent applications. (iv) Provide opportunity for Indian inventors including Start ups, MSMEs to get accelerated examination of their patent applications in Japan.

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