The Five IP Offices (IP5) is the name given to a forum of the five largest intellectual property offices in the world that was set up to improve the efficiency of the examination process for patents worldwide.
The IP5 Offices together handle about 80 per cent of the world's patent applications, and 95 per cent of all work carried out under the Patent Cooperation Treaty (PCT). The IP5 Offices work together closely to improve efficiency and address the growing backlogs in applications worldwide. The heads of the IP5 Offices meet annually to decide on strategy and review progress. For the first ten years of their co-operation, the IP5 Offices' focus was on "the elimination of unnecessary duplication of work among the offices, enhancement of patent examination efficiency and quality, and guarantee of the stability of patent right".
To cover evolving user needs, in 2017, the five offices defined their new vision of IP5 co-operation as: "Patent harmonization of practices and procedures, enhanced work-sharing, high-quality and timely search and examination results, and seamless access to patent information to promote an efficient, cost-effective and user-friendly international patent landscape."
The IP5 Offices recognise the importance of open communication with users of the system, including other patent offices. The offices therefore endeavour to bring on board the views of industry, and other offices that share the need for action. The World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) has also been involved as an observer in all levels of IP5 meetings.
Since 2012, annual meetings between the IP5 Heads of Office and industry representatives of the IP5 regions (IP5 Industry) have become an integral feature of IP5 co-operation. In addition, meetings of the Global Dossier Task Force (GDTF) have been successful in keeping developments in the Global Dossier project closely focussed on the needs of the user community.
As the number and complexity of topics in the IP5 co-operation increase, in-depth technical discussions with IP5 Industry representatives are essential to ensure that the IP5 co-operation continues to develop in line with users' expectations and needs.
The IP5 Heads of Office agreed in October 2016 to establish a new forum, the IP5 Industry Consultation Group (ICG), with a view to building on the success of the Global Dossier Task Force and expanding the consultation process with IP5 Industry to further areas of IP5 co-operation.
P5 Industry is currently comprised of:
-Patent Protection Association of China (PPAC)
-Japan Intellectual Property Association (JIPA)
-Korea Intellectual Property Association (KINPA)
-Intellectual Property Owners Association (IPO)
-American Intellectual Property Law Association (AIPLA)