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Access to Innovation



France Starting First PPH pilot program with Japan from 2021


The Japanese Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI) reported recently that the Japan Patent Office (JPO) will become the world’s first Patent Prosecution Highway (pilot) program partner with France from January 1, 2021, ahead of any other country. The METI commented that there is large investment in France by Japanese industry, so the move to enable smoother allowance and registration of patents in France is welcome to Japanese parties, but it also enables French applicants to gain IP more quickly in Japan, as well.


The Institut national de la propriété industrielle (INPI, National Intellectual Property Institute) of France had recently updated its patent examination procedures, making correspondence high enough between its and the JPO’s examination methods for PPH to begin, METI reported. Now JPO is the first patent office to have a PPH to speed up examination of substantially identical patent claims that have been allowed in France to said patent office, or vice versa.


This is a great opportunity for patent applicants in France or Japan to speed up their IP prosecution, at a time when the world needs reliable but speedy decisions on patents that may shape the future.



* The information provided on this website is for informational purposes only and is not intended as legal advice.

** For questions or consultation, please contact us for more information.

Taro Yaguchi

Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry of Japan. “世界に先駆けてフランスと「特許審査ハイウェイ」を開始します [Japan, leading the world, will open a Patent Prosecution Highway with France].”

November 27, 2020. Accessed December 10, 2020.


Reference in French:

Institut national de la propriété industrielle. “L’INPI signe son premier accord PPH avec l’Office des brevets du Japon.” (French announcement) November 27, 2020. Accessed December 10, 2020.


Reference in English:

Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry of Japan. “Japan to Be France’s First Partner for Patent Prosecution Highway Program.” November 27, 2020. Accessed December 10, 2020.




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Larry Cutshaw
Director Business Development, Office of the Vice President for Research and Innovation


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