Patent offices in Europe, Japan and the US will launch a shared search tool called Common Citation Document.
“Based on a proposal made by industry, the new tool will provide details about patent applications for the same invention filed at several different offices in parallel,” said Benoît Battistelli, president of the European Patent Office, in a statement. “Companies and inventors in particular stand to benefit from the improved access to information.”
The deal is part of the offices’ trilateral cooperation, which was set up in 1983. The 30th Annual Trilateral Conference will be hosted by the Japan Patent Office in November 2012.