SCP 15: State of Play on day four of WIPO’s patent committee

14 October 2010
Day 4 of the 15th session of the WIPO Standing Committee on the Law of Patents (SCP 15)

The WIPO SCP is still in informals and it is expected that the formal plenary session will be resume at 11:30 AM (Geneva time). Thus far, the Committee has examined two issues: a) Standards and Patents and b) Exclusions from Patentable Subject Matter and Exceptions. On Monday, Professor Lionel Bently (Cambridge) presented the ‘Experts’ Study on Exclusions from Patentable Subject Matter and Exceptions and Limitations to the Rights’.

For KEI’s general intervention and its intervention related to exclusions from patentable subject matter and exceptions and limitations to the rights, please click on the following links: a) KEI general intervention and b) KEI’s intervention on L&Es.

With respect to standards and patents, KEI requested the Committee to create a cluster of experts to examine:

Possible best practices or global norms for mandatory obligations to disclose patents relating to open standards for some essential information or energy technologies or other essential areas of technology.

The following items still have yet to be discussed at SCP 15: (c) The Client-Attorney Privilege, (d) Dissemination of Patent Information, (e) Transfer and (f) Opposition Systems.

Much of the informal negotiations have revolved around what items will be up for consideration at SCP 16. The major ask of Group B (the industrialized country bloc that includes some members of the European Union, United States, Switzerland, Japan, Norway, the Holy See, Israel, Turkey, Canada, Australia and New Zealand) is their proposal on patent quality which can be found here. The major ask of the Development Agenda Group ( Algeria, Brazil, Cuba, Djibouti, Ecuador, Egypt, Guatemala, India, Indonesia, Iran, Malaysia, Pakistan, the Philippines, South Africa, Sri Lanka, Sudan, Uruguay, and Yemen) is to establish a work program on limitations and exceptions, a proposal first tabled by Brazil in January 2010. From sources close to the negotiations, the African Group wants ‘Patents and health (including exhaustion, the Doha Declaration and other WTO instruments, patent landscaping)’ to be discussed at SCP 16. Finally, a major priority for Group B and the Central European and Baltic states Group is further discussion of Client-attorney privilege.

A night session is envisioned for today, day four of WIPO SCP 15.