Singapore to offer the world’s fastest patent application to grant

Singapore to offer the world’s fastest patent application to grant

In conjunction with the World Intellectual Property Day1 2020 celebrations themed “Innovate for a Green Future”, the Intellectual Property Office of Singapore (IPOS) will offer a pilot programme to accelerate grants of patent applications in all technology fields to just six months, starting from 4 May 2020. The programme – the SG Patent Fast Track - is the world’s fastest application-to-grant process of its kind.

 

The technology-neutral programme reflects the important role IP offices play in supporting innovators and their solutions to address global developments in sustainable development, and particularly in current times, that of public healthcare. Examples of technologies that the programme will benefit include:

  • Technologies with a social impact (e.g. GreenTech relating to sustainable food production, climate change, waste, water and energy management),
  • Technologies with healthcare impacts (e.g. digital health solutions, tracing apps, ventilators, diagnostics kits) among others, and
  • Emerging technologies with a short product lifecycle (e.g. FinTech, Industry 4.0, Artificial Intelligence).

 

Under the programme, innovators can expect their qualifying patent applications to be granted in as quickly as six months, compared to a typical period of two years or more. The pilot is planned to end on 29 April 2022. Annex A details the eligibility criteria and application process.

 

Sharmaine Wu, Director of Patents, Designs & Plant Varieties of IPOS, said: “In these unprecedented times, IP Offices need to step up efforts to support solutions that deal with the global challenges. A week ago, IPOS International, a wholly-owned subsidiary under IPOS, announced a free online training course on IP essentials for businesses. We now offer this SG Patent Fast Track programme because we understand the needs of innovators. Through this, IPOS is staying ahead of the curve and is committed to supporting innovators and enterprises across technology sectors to bring their products and services faster to investors and global markets. The move also strongly complements Singapore’s drive towards becoming a global research and development hub2.”

 

The new scheme will replace IPOS’s two other successful initiatives, the FinTech Fast Track (FTFT) and Accelerated Initiatives for Artificial Intelligence (AI2) launched in 2018 and 2019, respectively. Till date, there have been 86 eligible applications under both schemes, 70% of which were filed by Singapore entities. Local companies that have obtained accelerated patent grants include Qrypted Technology and Skyrus Network.

 

The SG Patent Fast Track programme comes as global IP filing activities continue to grow at a rapid pace with patent filings around the world alone, exceeding 3.3 million, representing a 5.2% growth between 2017 and 20183. According to WIPO’s latest report, Asia is the hub for global patent filings, receiving over two-thirds (66.8%) of all applications filed worldwide in 20184. Singapore’s robust IP ecosystem has also seen a growth in patent applications filed through Singapore, with a 46% increase, from 9,685 to 14,136 between 2012 and 2019. Innovators are increasingly building their international IP and IA portfolios through Singapore, by relying on IPOS’s patent reports to support their request for patent processing internationally. In 2019, there was a 234% increase (year-on-year) in the use of IPOS reports to accelerate patent grants in other jurisdictions – including major economies like the US, Japan, China and Europe – via IPOS’s Patent Prosecution Highway network.

 

1 An annual initiative by the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO).

2 RIE2020 Plan (www.nrf.gov.sg/rie2020) will be reviewed in 2021. This scheme will support emerging technology trend or a push for new strategic technology domains supported by the RIE plans.

3 World Intellectual Property Indicators 2019

4 World Intellectual Property Indicators 2019

 

About IPOS  International 

IPOS International is a wholly-owned subsidiary of the Intellectual Property Office of Singapore (IPOS). As the expertise and enterprise engagement arm of IPOS, our focus is on helping enterprises and industries use IP and intangible assets for business growth. Through IP strategy and management, patent search and analysis, and education and training, we work closely with public and private enterprises to support them through their innovation journey. More information on IPOS International can be found at www.iposinternational.com.

 

About IPOS

The Intellectual Property Office of Singapore (IPOS) is a government agency under the Ministry of Law. Our mission is to use our intellectual property (IP) expertise and networks to drive Singapore’s future growth and build Singapore into a hub where innovative enterprises use IP and intangible assets to grow. More information on IPOS can be found at www.ipos.gov.sg.

 

For media queries and interviews, please contact:  

IPOS International

Rachel Tan | +65 9271 1908 | [email protected]   

IPOS 

Gracie Xiang | +65 6705 2367 | [email protected]  

Benjamin Tan | +65 6331 6560 | [email protected]

 

 

Annex A

Eligibility criteria for the SG Patent Fast Track programme:

  • Application must be first-filed in Singapore, i.e. no priority claim,
  • Application must contain 20 or fewer claims,
  • The request is within the cap on the number of requests per month (at least 5)5, and
  • The request is within the cap of 10 requests per year per entity (individual or corporate).

 

How to make a request for an application to be on the SG Patent Fast Track:

  • File Patent Form 1 (Request for Grant of Patent) and Patent Form 11 (Request for Search and Examination Report) using IP2SG and on the same day, and
  • A document tagged as FastTrack must be submitted with Patent Form 1 and Patent Form In the FastTrack Document, please state the reason(s) for requesting acceleration and the technology field to which the invention relates. Possible reasons for acceleration include the patent application being filed is for an emerging technology with a short product lifecycle (eg: FinTech, Industry 4.0 and Artificial Intelligence) or a technology with an environment or public health cause (eg: food security, mitigating climate change, waste water and smart energy management, and therapeutic agents to combat COVID-19).

 

Other points to note about the SG Patent Fast Track:

  • Applicant must respond within 2 weeks from the receipt of formalities examination adverse report, and
  • Applicant must respond within 2 months from the date of receipt of written

 

5 SG Patent Fast Track requests will be assessed on a first come, first served basis. Unutilised capacity for the month will be rolled over once to the next month, subject to a maximum cap of 10 per month.

 

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Posted on: 27 April 2020
IPOS International
IPOS International