b'THE UNITARY PATENT SYSTEM - A NEW PILLAR FOR INNOVATION IN EUROPEBY: LUIS BERENGUER GIMENEZ, SPOKESPERSON FOR THE EUROPEAN PATENT OFFICE (EPO)O n 1 June 2023, the Unitary Patent System will enter into oper- ment in high-tech sectors in members states because of this change. ation, making it the single most important development of theThe Unitary Patent system will be a game changer, sending strong European patent system in the last 50 years. The new system willsignals to the world that Europe remains a hot spot for innovation introduce the Unitary Patent, a European patent with unitary effectand economic growth. across the territories of the EU Member States participating in theUnitary Patents, like regular European patents, are based on system, and the Unified Patent Court (UPC), a new legal institutionthe European Patent Convention (EPC) and will be processed and which will adjudicate on Unitary Patents and European Patents ingranted in accordance with the rules and procedures of the EPC. these states. To date, 17 EU Member States are part the system.However, they will not replace the regular European patents or Additional states are anticipated to join in the future. national patents but provide for an additional option to the users The Unitary Patent system is a pivotal step forward in con- of the patent system. solidating a barrier-free European market supporting technology transfer, investments, and confidence in Europe.A GAME CHANGERThis is an exciting moment for Europe as we strongly press ahead with the creation of a unified market for innovation and technology, says EPO President Antnio Campinos, The Unitary Patent system will not only simplify and strengthen the legal protection of inventions and their enforcement, but it will also foster the attractiveness of the European market for inventors and investors alike. As the system ramps up, we expect to see a 2% increase in annual trade flows and a 15% boost in foreign direct invest- EPO President Antnio CampinosThe Members States marked in dark blue will join the UP system on 1 June 2023. They are Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, the Netherlands, Portugal, Slovenia,and Sweden.32IEUROPEAN SEEDIEUROPEAN-SEED.COM'