Five remarkable points for PCT applications entering the Vietnamese National Phase

04/04/2022 - 1034 views

In recent years, Vietnam has made significant advances in technology transformation, science and technology application, and innovation in a variety of disciplines. Along with that, the number of international patent applications filed under Patent Cooperation Treaty (PCT) entering the Vietnamese National Phase is also increasing significantly. This article aims to point out five (5) remarkable points for PCT applications entering the Vietnamese National Phase.

 1. Time frame for PCT applications to enter the Vietnamese National Phase

Time frame allowable for PCT applications to enter the Vietnamese National Phase is thirty-one (31) months since the priority date or filing date of PCT applications (if the international application does not have a priority date).

Previously, an applicant may file a PCT application entering the Vietnamese National Phase as late as six (06) months after the above-mentioned thirty-one (31) months period if a fee was paid. However, according to the Circular 16/2016/TT-BKHCN dated June 30, 2016 revising a number of Articles of Circular 01/2007/TT-BKHCN dated February 14, 2007; the six (06) months extension term has been removed. Therefore, the applicant should proactively monitor and file the PCT application designating Vietnam on time to avoid refusal.

2. How to enter the Vietnamese National Phase for PCT application designating Vietnam?

The PCT application entering the Vietnamese National Phase must be filed to the IP Office of Vietnam (IPVN) through certified IP Agents in accordance with the legal provisions of Vietnam.

3. Formal requirements for PCT application entering the Vietnamese National Phase:

  • 02 Invention application requests, according to form No. 01-SC of Appendix A of Circular No. 01/2007/TT-BKHCN;
  • The copy of the document of the PCT application (in case the applicant submits the request for entering into national phase before the international publication date);
  • 02 The Vietnamese translation of the specification and abstract of the PCT application; the explanation of the amendment if the application entering into national phase is different from the PCT application;
  • The copy of the receipt of official fees;
  • Power of Attorney.

4. Examination procedure

After entering into the national phase, the PCT application designating Vietnam is examined for formality and substance according to the procedures for the ordinary invention registration application filed directly in Vietnam.

According to the law, after entering into the Vietnamese national phase, the PCT application will be examined for formality within the 32nd month from the earliest priority date/filing date. The time frame for substance examination is 18 months from the date of the request for substance examination or publication date, whichever is later.

5. How does the PCT application designating Vietnam to enter into the early national stage?

There are many cases where the applicant wants to enter into Vietnamese national phase early and speed up the examination process, that is, wants the application to be examined as formality before the above 32nd month, to quickly enter into the substance examination process. The Vietnamese law allows to submit Request for the earlier entrance into National phase so that the application is early examined as formality according to the time stated in the request.

However, in fact, it is until PCT application has been published, application entering into the Vietnam national phase is officially examined. This is due to that all information and documents recorded in the international-receiving office will be recorded in Vietnam. Only when the international application has been published, so IPVN has a basis to compare with the information of the Vietnam application and the PCT application to proceed formality examination. Thus, the applicant should proactively provide information about the publication of an international application to IPVN in case that the application has been published after submitting the filling request to IPVN with a request for early entering into the national phase for the application to be examined as within 1 month of the request and information being filed.

Should you have any further questions, please do not hesitate to contact us via our email address: info@ageless.vn