The Commission’s plan to save costs and unify national patent standards by creating a single European patent had been met with a stony response from EU member states right from the start. Spain and Italy, concerned about their patents being discriminated against from the other member states on a language basis, had rejected the idea. All the more, in its judgment the European Court of Justice had supported the widely-held concerns among member states concerning unfair competition from outsiders, particularly because the Commission’s plans included joining in Switzerland, Turkey and a number of other countries outside the EU.
According to the ruling, ‘the agreement would alter the essential character of the powers conferred on the institutions of the European Union and on the member states,’ to which the Commission replied with an equivocal “now that the opinion is available, the commission will analyse it very carefully with a view to identifying appropriate solutions”. In the meantime, Zoltán Cséfalvay on behalf of the EU Presiding State of Hungary, made it clear that notwithstanding the decision the ‘work will continue’.
[European Affairs Contributor]
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