2.002. When is an Office a designated Office? The national Office of a Contracting State is a “designated Office” if the State is “designated” in the international application for national protection. The filing of a request constitutes the designation of all Contracting States that are bound by the Treaty on the international filing date. However, some States may be excluded from this all-inclusive designation where they have notified the International Bureau that Rule 4.9(b) applies to them (see International Phase, paragraph 5.053). Where a PCT Contracting State is party to the ARIPO Harare Protocol, the Eurasian Patent Convention or the European Patent Convention and is designated for a regional (ARIPO, Eurasian or European) patent, the regional Office concerned (the ARIPO Office, the Eurasian Patent Office or the European Patent Office) is the designated Office. Where a State party to the ARIPO Harare Protocol, the Eurasian Patent Convention or the European Patent Convention is designated twice, namely both for national protection and for a regional patent, there are two designated Offices for that State – the national Office of the State itself and the regional Office concerned. However, certain States party to the ARIPO Harare Protocol or the European Patent Convention have “closed the national route” whereby patent protection can be obtained in those countries via an international application only by way of a designation for a regional (ARIPO or European) patent. If any of the States that have “closed the national route” are designated, the designated Office concerned is always the ARIPO Office or the European Patent Office, respectively (see International Phase, paragraphs 4.022 to 4.026). The European Patent Office is also, in effect, the designated Office where patent protection is desired for a designated State through the extension of a European patent to that State, a possibility which is only available for countries which have a corresponding agreement with the European Patent Organisation (see Annex B (EP) and the National Chapter (Summary) relating to the European Patent Office). Where States party to the OAPI Agreement are designated, the OAPI Office, by virtue of the provisions of that Agreement, is always the designated Office (see International Phase, paragraphs 4.022 to 4.026). The competent designated Office(s) for each Contracting State is (are) set out in Annexes B.
2.003. Where the applicant, before the expiration of the time limit for entering the national phase, voluntarily withdraws a designation, the Office of or acting for the State whose designation is withdrawn ceases to be a designated Office.
Date retrieved: 02 November 2015