Press release

New Patent Prosecution Highway opens between the UK and China

This news article was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government

Patent Prosecution Highway programme launched between the UK Intellectual Property Office and the State Intellectual Property Office China.

A new pilot Patent Prosecution Highway (PPH) programme was launched today (1 July 2014) between the UK Intellectual Property Office (IPO) and the State Intellectual Property Office (SIPO) of the People’s Republic of China. The launch of the pilot programme follows the signing of a Joint Statement of Intent by the IPO and SIPO as part of the Prime Minister’s visit to China in December of last year.

The PPH allows applicants who have been successful in obtaining a patent at one office to request accelerated processing of a corresponding application at the other. The second office can make use of the work undertaken by the first office to more quickly and efficiently process the application.

Minister for Intellectual Property Lord Younger said:

The launch of the Patent Prosecution Highway with China will enable innovative British businesses to obtain patent protection in China more quickly and cheaply than ever before.

This can only help to encourage growth and enable UK businesses to work more closely with one of our most important economic partners.

UK exports to China are growing faster than our French and German competitors with exports almost doubling since 2009 - reaching more than £1 billion per month.

The Patent Prosecution Highway will also help to reduce duplication, helping to create a more efficient and affordable system for businesses in both the UK and China.

The UK-China PPH pilot starts on the 1 July 2014 and will run for an initial period of 2 years, ending on 30 June 2016.

Notes to editors

  1. The Intellectual Property Office is an executive agency of the Department for Business, Innovation, and Skills and is responsible for the national framework of Intellectual Property rights, comprising patents, designs, trademarks and copyright.
  2. The Intellectual Property Office has existing PPH agreements with the following organisations: IP Australia, the Canadian Intellectual Property Office, the Danish Patent and Trademark Office, the German Patent and Trade Mark Office, the National Board of Patents and Registration of Finland, the Hungarian Intellectual Property Office, the Icelandic Patent Office, the Israel Patent Office, the Japan Patent Office, the Korean Intellectual Property Office, the Nordic Patent Institute, the Norwegian Industrial Property Office, the Portuguese Institute of Industrial Property, the Russian Federal Service for Intellectual Property, the Spanish Patent and Trademark Office, the Swedish Patent and Registration Office, the United Kingdom Intellectual Property Office and the United States Patent and Trademark Office.