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EU: Patent Plan Would End Language Feud

BRUSSELS--A plan for twelve nations from the 27-member European Union to create their own single patent would help inventors and end a stand-off over languages, the European Union's executive arm said Tuesday.

"Filing for patents in Europe is a costly and complicated affair, making it available only to those companies who have deep pockets," said Michel Barnier, European Union Commissioner for Internal Market and Services. "This is why the commission proposes that some member states should be able to move ahead for a unitary patent protection, and I hope that over time all member states will join this new system."

Proposals for a single EU patent have been under discussion for over a decade, but member countries reached a stalemate over language rules. Last month, ministers for economics and enterprise failed to reach a compromise on the language, after having agreed last year on how the new system. Twelve EU member states including France, Germany, the U.K., Sweden and the Netherlands then contacted the commission asking to use the "enhanced cooperation" process to forge ahead with a patent.

Read the full Wall Street Journal story, "EU: Patent Plan Would End Language Feud."

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