Although the EPO's competence as an IPEA is in principle universal, i.e. not restricted to international applications from e.g. EPC contracting states, restrictions of various nature do limit its competence (see points 309 ff). In particular it is stressed that the EPO is competent to act as IPEA only if a "European ISA" (including the EPO itself) carried out the international search (see point 311).
Date retrieved: 30 December 2018