Brunei Darussalam’s Intellectual Property office (BruIPO) tapped Intellectual Property Office of the Philippines (IPOPHL) to extend its search and examination services to its patent applications, according to IPOPHL.
IPOPHL said Monday the “outsourcing arrangement” stemmed from a memorandum of understanding (MOU) signed by IPOPHL Director General Rowel S. Barba and the Attorney General of Brunei Darussalam, Dato Seri Paduka Awang Haji Ahmad Bin Pehin Orang Kaya Laila Setia Bakti Di-Raja Dato Laila Utama Haji Awang Isa, in his capacity as Registrar of BruIPO, in December 2023.
Through this agreement, IPOPHL said its Bureau of Patents will also accept “re-examination, provide opinions in response to an opposition over an amendment to a patent and extend capacity-building activities to help BruIPO adopt international best practices in patent search and examination.”
IPOPHL said it would process a maximum of 200 applications a year from BruIPO over the next five years.
Barba said this is the first time another IP office has outsourced IPOPHL for a core service.
“This shows increased confidence in the efficiency of our processes and our tested and proven expertise in emerging technologies after over 76 years of conducting patent search and examination,” the IPOPHL chief said, adding that the first patent office in the Philippines was established in 1947 through Republic Act 165.
Across Asean, Barba noted the Philippines offers “one of the fastest” turnaround times from application to grant or refusal.
Moreover, the IPOPHL chief said it is the first country to establish a Patent Quality Review System that gained IPOPHL’s patent search and examination services a “high rating” of compliance with international standards.
“We are delighted that our first-ever client is no less than a friend in the Association of Southeast Asian Nations which, like the Philippines, is aiming to sustain its momentum to recover from the pandemic,” said Barba.
The IPOPHL expressed hope that this partnership will “create more wins” for innovation in the Asean and serve as a “global model” for collaborations with meaningful outcomes.