Canada continues to move toward ratification of the Patent Law Treaty and modernization of its patent regime

From: Canadian Intellectual Property Office

Canada continues to move toward ratification of the Patent Law Treaty and modernization of its patent regime

News release

December 1, 2018—Gatineau—Canadian Intellectual Property Office (CIPO)

Today, the Government of Canada is holding public consultations on proposed amendments to the Patent Rules (the Rules) by publishing them in the Canada Gazette, Part I. The public will have a period of 30 days, from December 1 to 31, 2018, to submit comments.

The revisions made in the Rules are an important step toward ratification of the Patent Law Treaty (PLT), which will help Canada to modernize its patent regime. The aim of the PLT is to harmonize and streamline formal procedures in respect of national and regional patent applications and patents and thus to make such procedures more user-friendly, so that Canada’s patent regime can be brought into line with those of other parties to the Treaty.

The Patent Act has already been amended in preparation for ratification. The Rules were modified in close cooperation with stakeholders, and a public consultation with Canadians has already been held.

On November 5, Canada acceded to the Hague Agreement Concerning the International Registration of Industrial Designs. In addition, Canada is working on joining three other international intellectual property treaties administered by the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO): the Madrid Protocol, the Singapore Treaty and the Nice Agreement concerning trademarks. The changes to the system align with the Government’s Innovation and Skills Plan, as well as the Intellectual Property Strategy, ensuring that Canada’s patent regime is modern, robust and supports Canadian innovation. As a result, it will help Canadian businesses, creators, entrepreneurs and innovators understand, protect and access IP.

Submit your comments using the public consultations’ page.

“Canada’s economic growth and the success of our businesses depend on strong intellectual property rights. Ratification of the Patent Law Treaty is a critical opportunity in our drive to make Canada a global innovation hub. Patents are vital tools used to protect and incentivize innovation. Since Canada is a small, open economy, our IP profile is highly international in nature. Harmonization with international IP agreements will facilitate greater international trade and help Canadian businesses expand into new markets.”

Johanne Bélisle, CIPO’s Commissioner of Patents, Registrar of Trademarks and Chief Executive Officer

Quick facts

  • The PLT is administered by the WIPO and will enable Canadians to use a modernized patent regime that will help Canadian businesses stay competitive in international markets by giving them an efficient means of protecting their IP around the world.

  • So far, 40 countries have ratified the PLT, including several of Canada’s main trading partners, such as the United States, France, the United Kingdom and Japan.

  • Patents are a key component of IP: according to the WIPO, the total number of patent applications at the global level grew steadily between 2009 and 2016, rising 8.3% in 2016 alone.

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