A niche blog dedicated to the issues that arise when supplementary protection certificates (SPCs) extend patents beyond their normal life -- and to the respective positions of patent owners, investors, competitors and consumers. The blog also addresses wider issues that may be of interest or use to those involved in the extension of patent rights. You can email The SPC Blog here

Wednesday 18 March 2009

EGA opposes zero- and negative-term SPCs

The European Generic Medicines Association (EGA) issued a press release late last week under the heading "Better Patents Make Better MedicInes/ Improved Efficiency of the European Patent System Would Stimulate Innovation and Competition in the Pharmaceutical Sector". This press release reported on the opening speech of EGA's DG Greg Perry, at the 5th EGA Legal Affairs Forum, highlighting the generic medicines industry’s role in European healthcare and warning of increasing hurdles to competition and real innovation if the European patent system is not reformed. Perry welcomed welcoming the European Commission's pharmaceutical sector inquiry, supported initiatives to improve patent quality and urged the tightening of rules for filing divisional applications.

On SPCs the press release had this to say:
"A lengthy discussion on Supplementary Protection Certificates also took place during the day’s proceedings. The possibility of modifying the Regulation on Paediatric Medicines was raised in order to clarify that a paediatric extension should not be granted when there is no SPC granted with a positive term. Mr Perry stated “that zero or negative term SPCs should not be extended”".

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