Jurisdiction - Hong Kong
Reports and Analysis
Hong Kong – Reform of Patent System: Update.

25 April, 2013


Legal News & Analysis – Asia Pacific – Hong Kong – Intellectual Property


Enterprises and research institutions have always been complaining that the patent system of Hong Kong is unfriendly to local patent filings and curbs the growth of local inventions because there is no original grant patent in Hong Kong.  Soon, a change will address this issue.


Under the current patent system in Hong Kong, patent application allows an applicant to secure either a standard patent or a short-term patent.  After more than a year from the end of public consultation, the Advisory Committee recommended in its report released in February 2013 to add a third kind of patents which include substantive examination by foreign patent offices, known as original grant patents, and will work out an implementation plan in the next phase.


The key difference among the three kinds of patents to be offered is:


1.    Short-term patent does not require any substantive examination;

2.    Standard patent is merely a re-registration system to register a UK, CN, or EP designating UK patent in Hong Kong;

3.    Original grant patents will fill the gap if an applicant wishes to directly secure a Hong Kong patent which is proven to be valid through substantive examination.


The Advisory Committee also recommended a full-fledged regulatory regime on patent agency services in Hong Kong, to be achieved in stages and with transitional measures, to support the development of the new patent system in Hong Kong.


On one hand, the ongoing patent system reform aims at accommodating the development needs and the vision for innovation of Hong Kong, as well as bringing the Hong Kong patent system on par with those in other economies.  On the other hand, the existing system such as short-term patents and standard patents will be preserved, therefore the impact to users to the current system will be minimal.



For further information, please contact:
Vincent Oey, Ella Cheong (Hong Kong & Beijing)



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