Egypt - Extension of time for filing PCT national phase patent applications no longer available and increase in patent examination fees
Egypt was the 121st Patent Cooperation Treaty (PCT) contracting state and became bound by the PCT on 6 September 2003. The deadline for filing a PCT national phase application in Egypt is 30 months.
As mentioned in our newsflash of 24 March 2010, the Egyptian Patent Office passed a resolution whereby it was possible to obtain a three month extension to enter the national phase in Egypt.
The Egyptian Patent Office has recently issued two decisions:
The first decision is that the three month extension to enter the national phase in Egypt has been reversed and it will no longer be possible to obtain a three month extension past the 30 month deadline to enter the national phase in Egypt. This decision is not yet in force but is expected to come into force shortly. We understand that discussions are taking place with the Egyptian authorities in an effort to have this decision reconsidered.
The second decision is that the examination fees have been increased from 2000 EGP to 7000 EGP, which is an increase of 350%. Some of the Egyptian law firms have met with the Minister of Scientific Research and have asked the Minister to reconsider this increase. The increase has been put on hold until the Minister makes a final decision. If you have any pending Egyptian patent applications where the examination fees have not been paid yet, we recommend that you instruct payment of the examination fees as soon as possible in order to benefit from the current examination fees cost of 2000 EGP.
We shall keep you updated and for any queries, please contact us.
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Spoor & Fisher