SUNYOUNG INT’L Patent & Law Firm Newsletter(August, 2014)
KIPO Increases the Number of Its PCT International Searches by 6.4%
The number of PCT* international searches conducted by the Korean Intellectual Property Office (KIPO) in the first half of 2014 totaled 14,743—a 6.4% increase over the same period last year. Foreign companies led the way with 9,093 applications, 10.8% more than was received during the first half of 2013.
* Patent Cooperation Treaty: Under this treaty, a one-time filing of an international patent application is automatically filed to all countries that ratified of the treaty.
** International search is an essential PCT application procedure to check for prior art. Applicants can choose from nineteen different International Searching Authorities located all over the world.
According to KIPO’s own internal analysis, this increase in international searches requested by foreign companies is mostly due to the outstanding quality of KIPO’s international search reports, as well as the strengthening of its PCT support services for foreign applicants.
In 2013, the number of PCT international search reports issued by KIPO exceeded 30,000 for the first time in the organization’s history. Since 2009, KIPO has maintained a third-place ranking in the world regarding the sheer volume of international search reports it issues.
Revealingly, the number of international search reports requested by foreign companies totaled 18,103—nearly 60% of all international search reports issued by KIPO. This demonstrates that KIPO is internationally considered to be one of the most highly competitive International Searching Authorities.
According to WIPO’s PCT Yearly Review, which was publicly released in July, the European Patent Office (EPO) took first place by publishing 77,395 international search reports. The Japan Patent Office was second with 42,433, and KIPO came in third with 30,461. Apart from EPO, JPO, and KIPO, only SIPO (23,737) and the USPTO (16,635) published more than 10,000 international search reports in 2013.