Proposed Amendments In The Thai Patents Act

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The latest Bill is all set to bring about major changes in practice and filing of patent applications. The law proposes a mandatory disclosure of the Geographical Indication or Traditional Knowledge which has been used in order to form the patent. This means that one's the patent is developed using a prior GI or TK then complete information of its usage along with 'Prior Informed Consent' (PIC) and 'Mutually Agreed Terms' ( MAT) from the owner of the GI or TK are to be submitted. However these documents need not be submitted in case of genetic resources derived from microorganisms and animals collected in Thailand.

Secondly the bill proposes to add on to the existing list of unpatentable items. ''Business method patent' and 'surgical method patent' are now one's on which patent cannot be claimed. The rationale behind introducing Business method in the non patentable list is that it does not satisfy the definition of 'invention' which is mentioned in the patents act. Also, 'surgical method' has been added to the list in compliance of Article 27(3) of the TRIPs agreement which incorporates both therapeutic and non- therapeutic treatments to be non patentable subject matters.

Furthermore, there has been a sharp increase in the patent filing fee. A comparison of the same is tabled.

 

CURRENT FEES (TBH)

PROPOSED FEES (TBH)

Patent Application

500

2500

Request for extension of the amendment.

-N.A-

5000

Petty Patent Application

250

2500

Another drastic change that will be seen is in the process of filing. Earlier the publication of patent in journal for opposition was done only once, that is at the complete of preliminary examination. However the new law now proposes publication in journal twice, once after the preliminary examination is completed that is at the end of 18 months and second after the substantive examination that is called the pre grand opposition.

The proposed amendments have especially taken care of complying the various TRIPs standards. The new bill introduces additional ground for grant of compulsory license that is 'to remedy a practice determined after judicial or administrative process to be anti-competitive' this has been added to take care of Article 31(k) of the TRIPs. Expropriation of medicines to less developed countries and those who have not been able to meet the production requirement is also taken care of byway of proposed amendments in to make the law in consonance with Article 31 of the TRIPs agreement.

These new amendments are however just been proposed through the new bill yet to be finalised as it is pending Cabinets approval.  

Author:  Shrivalli Kajaria, Intern at Global Patent Filing. In case of any queries please contact/write back to us at support@globalpatentfiling.com.