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EPO launches major patent training initiative together with the national IP offices of Portugal and Brazil

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During an online ceremony on 23 November, EPO President António Campinos was joined by Ms Ana Margarida Bandeira, President of the Council of INPI Portugal, and Mr Cláudio Vilar Furtado, President of the Council of INPI Brazil, to launch an international patent training event addressing the needs of the Community of Portuguese Language Countries. The three-day event covered a broad range of patent-related topics and was attended by more than 130 participants from Angola, Cape Verde, Guinea Bissau, Equatorial Guinea, Mozambique and São Tomé and Príncipe. It drew on synergies with the African Regional Intellectual Property Organization (ARIPO) and Organisation Africaine de la Propriété Intellectuelle (OAPI), of which some of the participants' countries are also members.

Multilateral co-operation with global impact

The event is intended to mark the beginning of a long-term training programme and to help develop capacity and competences within the national IP offices of the states where participants are based. This will support them in implementing international best practices in search and examination and help raise awareness of IP among a broader audience, including professionals at universities, technology transfer offices and incubators. The training emphasises the importance of patent knowledge and the PATLIB network, as well as enabling national IP offices to support local innovators more effectively, especially when they consider how best to protect and leverage the commercial value of their inventions.

The training also aims at greater levels of efficiency by helping to avoid the duplication of efforts. Hence the importance of multilateral co-operation between IP offices and the joint commitment to developing the patent system in the Lusophone community. Mr Campinos warmly thanked all partners for their invaluable contributions, including the co-organizers INPI Portugal and INPI Brazil, as well as those organisations that supported the event: ARIPO, OAPI and the EU-funded AfrIPI project.

Looking ahead

The first Lusophone Conference on Industrial Property organised by the Portuguese Institute of Industrial Property (INPI) is scheduled to take place as a hybrid event on 26 April 2022 at the Lisbon premises of the Community of Portuguese Language Countries (CPLP). The conference offers a further opportunity to share and disseminate best practices among IP offices in Portuguese-speaking countries.

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