The member States of the Council of Europe, signatory hereto,
Considering that the aim of the Council of Europe is to achieve a greater unity between
its members for the purpose, among others, of facilitating their economic and social
progress by agreements and common action in economic, social, cultural, scientific, legal
and administrative matters;
Considering that the unification of certain points of substantive law on patents for
invention is likely to assist industry and inventors, to promote technical progress and
contribute to the creation of an international patent;
Having regard to Article 15 of the Convention for the Protection of Industrial Property
signed at Paris on 20th March 1883, revised at Brussels on 14th December 1900, at
Washington on 2nd June 1911, at The Hague on 6th November 1925, at London on 2nd June 1934
and at Lisbon on 31st October 1958,
Have agreed as follows:
In the Contracting States, patents shall be granted for any inventions which are
susceptible of industrial application, which are new and which involve an inventive step.
An invention which does not comply with these conditions shall not be the subject of a
valid patent. A patent declared invalid because the invention does not comply with these
conditions shall be considered invalid ab initio.
The Contracting States shall not be bound to provide for the grant of patents in
- inventions the publication or exploitation of which would be contrary to ordre public
or morality, provided that the exploitation shall not be deemed to be so contrary merely
because it is prohibited by a law or regulation;
- plant or animal varieties or essentially biological processes for the production of
plants or animals; this provision does not apply to micro-biological processes and the
An invention shall be considered as susceptible of industrial application if it can be
made or used in any kind of industry including agriculture.
- An invention shall be considered to be new if it does not form part of the state of the
- Subject to the provisions of paragraph 4 of this article, the state of the art shall be
held to comprise everything made available to the public by means of a written or oral
description, by use, or in any other way, before the date of the patent application or of
a foreign application, the priority of which is validly claimed.
- Any Contracting State may consider the contents of applications for patents made, or of
patents granted, in that State, which have been officially published on or after the date
referred to in paragraph 2 of this article, as comprised in the state of the art, to the
extent to which such contents have an earlier priority date.
- A patent shall not be refused or held invalid by virtue only of the fact that the
invention was made public, within six months preceding the filing of the application, if
the disclosure was due to, or in consequence of:
- an evident abuse in relation to the applicant or his legal predecessor, or
- the fact that the applicant or his legal predecessor has displayed the invention at
official, or officially recognised, international exhibitions falling within the terms of
the Convention on international exhibitions signed at Paris on 22nd November 1928 and
amended on 10th May 1948.
An invention shall be considered as involving an inventive step if it is not obvious
having regard to the state of the art. However, for the purposes of considering whether or
not an invention involves an inventive step, the law of any Contracting State may, either
generally or in relation to particular classes of patents or patent applications, for
example patents of addition, provide that the state of the art shall not include all or
any of the patents or patent applications mentioned in paragraph 3 of Article 4.
Any Contracting State which does not apply the provisions of paragraph 3 of Article 4
shall nevertheless provide that no invention shall be validly protected in so far as it
includes matter which is or has been validly protected by a patent in that State which,
though not comprised in the state of the art, has, in respect of that matter, an earlier
Any group of Contracting States who provide for a common patent application may be
regarded as a single State for the purposes of paragraph 3 of Article 4, or of Article 6.
- The patent application shall contain a description of the invention with the necessary
drawings referred to therein and one or more claims defining the protection applied for.
- The description must disclose the invention in a manner sufficiently clear and complete
for it to be carried out by a person skilled in the art.
- The extent of the protection conferred by the patent shall be determined by the terms of
the claims. Nevertheless, the description and drawings shall be used to interpret the
- This Convention shall be open for signature by the member States of the Council of
Europe. It shall be subject to ratification or acceptance. Instruments of ratification or
acceptance shall be deposited with the Secretary General of the Council of Europe.
- This Convention shall enter into force three months after the date of deposit of the
eighth instrument of ratification or acceptance.
- In respect of a signatory State ratifying or accepting subsequently, the Convention
shall come into force three months after the date of deposit of its instrument of
ratification or acceptance.
- After the entry into force of this Convention, the Committee of Ministers of the Council
of Europe may invite any member of the International Union for the Protection of
Industrial Property which is not a member of the Council of Europe to accede thereto.
- Such accession shall be effected by depositing with the Secretary General of the Council
of Europe an instrument of accession which shall take effect three months after the date
of its deposit.
- Any Contracting Party may, at the time of signature or when depositing its instrument of
ratification, acceptance or accession, specify the territory or territories to which this
Convention shall apply.
- Any Contracting Party may, when depositing its instrument of ratification, acceptance or
accession or at any later date, by notification addressed to the Secretary General of the
Council of Europe, extend this Convention to any other territory or territories specified
in the declaration and for whose international relations it is responsible or on whose
behalf it is authorised to give undertakings.
- Any declaration made in pursuance of the preceding paragraph may, in respect of any
territory mentioned in such declaration, be withdrawn according to the procedure laid down
in Article 13 of this Convention.
- Notwithstanding anything in this Convention, each Contracting Party may, at the time of
signature or when depositing its instrument of ratification, acceptance or accession,
temporarily reserve, for the limited period stated below, the right:
- not to provide for the grant of patents in respect of food and pharmaceutical products,
as such, and agricultural or horticultural processes other than those to which paragraph b
of Article 2 applies;
- to grant valid patents for inventions disclosed within the six months preceding the
filing of the application, either, apart from the case referred to in paragraph 4.b of
Article 4, by the inventor himself, or, apart from the case referred to in paragraph 4.a
of Article 4, by a third party as a result of information derived from the inventor.
- The limited period referred to in paragraph 1 of this article shall be ten years in the
case of sub-paragraph a and five years in the case of sub-paragraph b. It shall start from
the entry into force of this Convention for the Contracting Party considered.
- Any Contracting Party which makes a reservation under this article shall withdraw the
said reservation as soon as circumstances permit. Such withdrawal shall be made by
notification addressed to the Secretary General of the Council of Europe and shall take
effect one month from the date of receipt of such notification.
- This Convention shall remain in force indefinitely.
- Any Contracting Party may, in so far as it is concerned, denounce this Convention by
means of a notification addressed to the Secretary General of the Council of Europe.
- Such denunciation shall take effect six months after the date of receipt by the
Secretary General of such notification.
The Secretary General of the Council of Europe shall notify the member States of the
Council, any State which has acceded to this Convention and the Director of the
International Bureau for the Protection of Industrial Property of:
- any signature;
- any deposit of an instrument of ratification, acceptance or accession;
- any date of entry into force of this Convention;
- any declaration and notification received in pursuance of the provisions of paragraphs 2
and 3 of Article 11;
- any reservation made in pursuance of the provisions of paragraph 1 of Article 12;
- the withdrawal of any reservation carried out in pursuance of the provisions of
paragraph 3 of Article 12;
- any notification received in pursuance of the provisions of paragraph 2 of Article 13
and the date on which denunciation takes effect.
In witness whereof the undersigned, being duly authorised thereto, have signed this
Done at Strasbourg, this 27th day of November 1963, in English and in French, both texts
being equally authoritative, in a single copy which shall remain deposited in the archives
of the Council of Europe. The Secretary General shall transmit certified copies to each of
the signatory and acceding States and to the Director of the International Bureau for the
Protection of Industrial Property.