International Arrangements:

  • Paris Union (from 12 May 1998)
  • WIPO (from 12 May 1998)
  • ARIPO (from 19 August 2014)
  • PCT (from 8 July 2008)

Note: The law in Sao Tome and Principe does recognise the PCT and provides that if there is any conflict between the national law and the PCT, then the PCT Rules prevail.

Types of Patents Available:

  • Patents of Invention
  • National Phase PCT Application
  • ARIPO Applications
  • ARIPO Regional Phase PCT Application

Novelty Requirements:

Absolute novelty is required.
However, novelty will not be destroyed if the disclosure of the invention to the public occurred not earlier than twelve months preceding the filing date or where applicable the priority date, and it was as a consequence of:

  • acts committed by the applicant or his predecessor in title, or
  • an abuse committed by a third party with regard to the applicant or his predecessor in title.


Discoveries, scientific theories and mathematical methods; plans, principles or methods in the field of
economic activity, the performance of purely intellectual activities or games; and methods of surgical or
therapeutic treatment of the human or animal body, and methods of diagnosis applied to the human or
animal body are not patentable. Products used for surgery, therapy or diagnosis are however patentable.

Filing Requirements:

Registry practice has not yet been established. The following information will be updated from time to time as more information becomes available.

National Phase PCT Application:

At present, we advise applicants to lodge the same documents as for a Non-PCT Application, plus the following:

  • Copy of International Publication
  • Copy of International Search report
  • Copy of International Preliminary Report on Patentability

Patent of Invention:

  • Power of Attorney (can be late filed).
  • Specification, claims and abstract in Portuguese (required on the day of filing).
  • Formal drawings, if applicable, (required on the day of filing).
  • Assignment of Invention (can be late filed).
  • Priority document with verified Portuguese translation of the covering page (can be late filed).

ARIPO Application in which Sao Tome and Principe is designated:

Please see ARIPO

ARIPO Regional Phase PCT Application:

Please see ARIPO


The term of a patent is twenty years from the filing date.


Renewal fees fall due annually from the first anniversary of the filing date.

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