The Council of EU Chambers has organized a seminar along with EBTC on 30th March 2017

The  seminar on “Protecting pharmaceutical and biotechnology inventions in Europe”, specifically organised for experts and practitioners in this field, by the European Business and Technology Centre (EBTC), the European Patent Office (EPO), in association with the Council of EU Chambers of Commerce in India (CEUCCI) and the Association of Biotechnology-Led Enterprises (ABLE) on 30th March 2017 in Mumbai. The event was specifically designed for IP practitioners and industry experts based in Mumbai. It put a special focus on the European practices in the pharmaceuticals and biotechnology domain, and on practical challenges faced by applicants in filing at EPO.

In his welcome address, Mr. Poul V Jensen, EBTC Director, provided insights on how EBTC is promoting and indigenising European technologies as well as innovations to suit the local needs in India through various projects, programmes and initiatives, enabling Indo-European collaborations. Dr A. Stamatopoulos, Principal Director Biotechnology at EPO, presented a brief about the latest updates at the European Patent Office. ABLE’s Chief Operating Officer, Mr. Narayanan Suresh, shed light on the activities pursued by his association and how they are taking up challenges and issues faced by companies in the pharmaceuticals and biotechnology sector. ABLE is a not-for-profit pan-India forum that represents the Indian biotechnology sector. They have over 400 members from all across India representing all verticals of the sector like agribiotech, bio-pharma, industrial biotech, bioinformatics, investment banks and venture capital firms, leading research and academic institutes, law firms and equipment suppliers. The Director of the Council of EU Chambers of Commerce in India (CEUCCI), Dr Renu Shome, deliberated on European initiatives to foster Indo-European collaboration. She highlighted that CEUCCI is an important link between European Union-Indian Businesses. CEUCCI organises events and business seminars so that businesses from both regions can interact freely.

The technical sessions were moderated by Mr Nicholas Körnig, international co-operation administrator at EPO. The presentations covered during the event were briefs about the European Patent Office and the European patent system;  the procedures at the EPO from filing to appeal (search, examination, opposition including oral proceedings, limitation, revocation and appeal); what is and what is not patentable in the fields of pharmaceuticals and biotechnology with practical examples; procedural and patentability aspects of the grant and opposition procedure at the EPO for applications and patents relating to pharmaceuticals and biotechnology and practical experiences in protecting pharma and biotech inventions from India in Europe by Dr. Dieter Tzschoppe, Director Pharmaceuticals, Mr. Klaus-Peter Döpfer, Director Biotechnology and Mr. Durgesh Mukharya, Partner, K&S Partners – India  respectively.

The presentations were followed by a very interactive discussion that is personal consultation  with EPO Experts. The participants expressed the need to increase awareness about the EPO guidelines for examination as well as the instructions on the practices and procedures which are followed in the various aspects of the examination.

The event was attended by more than 50 senior representatives from law firms, industry experts, as well as IP and trade counsellors from EU Embassies.

The seminar’s content and the EPO efforts have been very much appreciated by the participants and the law firms they represent. They expressed the wish to organise further seminars of this kind with a clear focus on specific domains in the future.

The seminar was organized within the frame of the EPO/EBTC activities in Indo-European cooperation for intellectual property rights (IPR), as EBTC is the official implementation partner of the European Patent Office (EPO) in India.