Document Actions

Single European patent plan gets second wind

ZDNet - The plan for a Europe-wide patent scheme has been revived, albeit without the involvement of Spain and Italy.

On Monday, with days to go before Poland takes over, the Hungarian presidency of the EU said it had won the approval of the Council of the European Union on a proposal for a unitary patent scheme. The move means the legislative process for creating such a system is once again underway.

"The creation of a single European patent and patent court is crucial for UK industry," UK intellectual property minister Baroness Wilcox said in a statement on Monday. "We support a European patent system which gives real benefits for business, consumers and the economy. It is vital to offer businesses the same access to patent protection in their home market of Europe as competitors in the US, China and Japan enjoy in theirs."

Wilcox said the savings to UK businesses are likely to be around £20m per year in translation costs alone.