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The European Patent Organisation (EPO) recently signed a ‘Reinforced Partnership agreement’ with the Superintendence of Industry and Commerce of Colombia. The main objective was to strengthen co-operation between the two nations.
About EPO: The European Patent Organisation is an intergovernmental organization which was established on 7 October 1977. It was set up on the basis of the European Patent Convention (EPC) which was signed in Munich in 1973. The preamble to the Convention defines the spirit of international co-operation under which the Organisation was established. It has two bodies:-
The European Patent Office: It acts as the executive arm of the European Patent Organisation. It offers a uniform application procedure to inventors. This procedure enables investors to seek patent protection in up to 44 countries. The European Patent Office is supervised by the Administrative Council.
The Administrative Council: It acts as the European PatentOffice's supervisory body with the composition of representatives from the Organisation’s member states. The European Patent Organisation currently is having 38 states as its members. In addition to this, European patents are recognized in:
- Two European extension states;
- Four validation states.
About the Virtual event - EPO President António Campinos and Colombia’s Superintendent of Industry and Commerce Andrés Barreto signed the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) during a virtual meeting.
"I am very pleased to intensify our co-operation with Colombia, one of Latin America's largest and most dynamic economies," said President Campinos. "International co-operation, innovation, and creation will play a pivotal role in helping governments to overcome the current crisis. This agreement will not only improve the quality and efficiency of handling patent applications, which is key as Colombia moves to strengthen its knowledge economy, but will also help align our patent systems to better support the global technology market."
Aim of the agreement - The aim of the agreement is as follows:
- To strengthen the co-operation in the provision of efficient, high-quality patent procedures;
- To support the local innovators.
- To improve the market access for European companies who wish to protect their inventions in Colombia.
According to the MoU, the Superintendence will be able to make use of the EPO's work products, tools, and practices over the next five years when granting national patents.