PCT National Phase application in Vietnam

PCT National Phase application in Vietnam. The Patent Cooperation Treaty (PCT) is an international treaty which regulates on the procedure of filing patent application in its member states. The Treaty was signed on 19 June 1970 during the Washington Diplomatic Conference on the Patent Cooperation Treaty. It is administered by the International Bureau of the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO), whose headquarters are in Geneva (Switzerland).

International Ip Conventions Vietnam

Normally, when an inventor wants to register his/her patent in a country, he/she must submit the patent application at the national Intellectual Property (IP) Office. However, with the Patent Cooperation Treaty, individuals/organizations will have the chance to register their invention (patent) in a large number of countries at the same time by submitting only one application to the World Intellectual Property Office (WIPO) during the “international phase”. After that, the granting of patents remains under the control of the national Intellectual Property Offices in what is called the “national phase”.

Within this article, we shall provide you with an overview on the PCT National Phase application in Vietnam.   

Difference between the “elected Office” and “designated Office” in the national phase

When entering national phase in Vietnam, the PCT application could be divided into two types, which is: “the international patent application electing Vietnam” and “the international patent application designating Vietnam”.

The key difference between these two types is the international preliminary examination – an optional step in the international phase that helps the applicant evaluate the chance of obtaining a patent certificate in the national phase.

In particular, if the applicant requests for the international preliminary examination in the international phase, the PCT application in the national phase shall be mentioned as “the international patent application electing Vietnam” and the national IP Office of Vietnam (NOIP) shall be the elected Office. The result of the international preliminary examination could be used as a citation document for the examination in Vietnam.

If the applicant does not request for the international preliminary examination, the PCT application in the national phase shall be mentioned as “the international patent application designating Vietnam” and the national IP Office of Vietnam (NOIP) shall be the designated Office. In this case, the NOIP shall examine the PCT application like other national patent application.

Required documents for filing PCT patent in Vietnam

Required Document Of Patent Registration In Vietnam
Required Document Of Patent Registration In Vietnam

a. In case the international patent application designates Vietnam

According to Article 27.4, Circular 01/2007/TT-BKHCN, in case the international patent application designates Vietnam, the applicant must submit the following documents:

  • 02 written patent application, with the form provided under the Appendix A, Circular 01/2007/TT-BKHCN;
  • The copy of the international application (if the applicant requests the entry into the national phase before the date of publication of the international publication);
  • 01 Vietnamese translation of the description and abstract in the international application (published version or original version if the application has not been published, and the revised version and explanation of modified part, if the application is national as amended by Article 19 of the Patent Cooperation Treaty);
  • The fee for entering national phase
  • The Power of attorney (in case the applicant submits the application through an Industrial Representative). The Power of attorney needs to be signed and sealed by the applicant – notarization and legalization is not required.

b. In case the international patent application elects Vietnam

According to Article 27.5, Circular 01/2007/TT-BKHCN, in case the international patent application elects Vietnam, the applicant must submit the following documents:

  • 02 written patent application, with the form provided under the Appendix A, Circular 01/2007/TT-BKHCN;
  • 01 Vietnamese translation of the description and abstract in the international application (published version or original version if the application has not been published, and the revised version and explanation of modified part, if the application is national as amended by Article 19 and/or Article 34.2 (b) of the Patent Cooperation Treaty);
  • 01 Vietnamese translation of the annexes of international preliminary examination report (upon request for substantive examination of the application);
  • The fee for entering national phase;
  • The Power of attorney (in case the applicant submits the application through an Industrial Representative). The Power of attorney needs to be signed and sealed by the applicant – notarization and legalization is not required.

Due date for entering national phase in Vietnam

After the international phase is completed, normally the applicant will have 30-31 months from the earliest priority date (depend on each country) to enter the national phase of the PCT application.

Under the laws of Vietnam, the above time is regulated as 31 months

Note: The Power of attorney could be submitted later within 34 months from the priority date (according to point a, Article 27.7, Circular 01/2007/TT-BKHCN).

Receiving Office for PCT patent registration in Vietnam

The PCT national phase application must be submitted at the National Office of intellectual property of Vietnam

  • Head Office: Address No. 384 to 386, Nguyen Trai, Thanh Xuan District, City. Hanoi.
  • Representative office in Da Nang: Address 135 is located on Minh Mang street, in Khue My ward, Ngu Hanh Son district, Da Nang.
  • Representative office in Ho Chi Minh City: Address 17 to 19 Ton That Tung Street, Pham Ngu Lao Ward in District 1, City. Ho Chi Minh.

Patent Registration Procedures in Vietnam

PCT National Phase application in Vietnam

After entering the national phase in Vietnam, the PCT application shall be examined through the following process:

  1. Formal examination: 1 month
  2. Publication: 19 months since filing date or 2 months since the application is formally accepted (whichever is later)
  3. In addition, applicant may request an early publication. In this case, the application shall be published within 2 months since National Office of Intellectual Property receives the request or since the application is accepted as a valid application (whichever is later)
  4. Substantive examination: 18 months since the publication date.
  5. Grant of Patent: In case the patent application meets the required criteria, it will be granted the patent of invention/ patent of utility solution.
luật sư Đỗ Bá Thích
Do Ba Thich

Mr Do Ba Thich is the founder of ANS Law – an IP & Business Law firm in Vietnam.  He worked as the leader in a reputed law and IP firm in Vietnam for years. Mr Thich is expertise in class actions in the field of intellectual property and Business consultancy. Lawyer Thich has conducted…