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Morocco to Recognise European Patents as National Patents

Mr Benoit Battistelli, President of the EPO and the Moroccan Minister of Industry, Moulay Hafid Elalamy announced that the agreement will enter into force on 1st March 2015.

“This is a historic step for the European patent system, and it brings to 41 the number of countries for which patent protection can be obtained simultaneously with a single European patent application,” said EPO President Battistelli.

Mr Battistelli also praised “Morocco’s strategic vision with regard to building up a national patent system that is firmly anchored in the international system”.  He noted that the legal certainty of patents granted by the EPO and validated in Morocco will strengthen the economic benefits of the Moroccan patent system and increase the country’s attractiveness for foreign investment.

Starting on 1st March 2015, anyone filing a European patent application will be able to request validation for Morocco against the payment of a fee.  European applications and patents validated for Morocco will have the same legal effects there as Moroccan patents and will be subject to Moroccan patent law.

Why validate in Morocco?

The major resources of the Moroccan economy are agriculture, phosphates, and tourism. Sales of fish and seafood are important as well. Industry and mining contribute about one-third of the annual GDP. With little oil or gas of its own, Morocco is said to import over 95% of its energy requirements. As a result, Morocco is driving through a solar panel scheme to become a world leader in solar-power plants which is hoped to provide 40% of the country’s energy requirements by 2020.

For more information on this and other aspects of patent filing strategy, please talk to Alex Turnbull at mail@tlip.co.uk.