Roland Grossenbacher reappointed to top position in the European Patent Organisation

At its 90th meeting, the Administrative Council of the European Patent Organisation (EPO) re-elected Roland Grossenbacher to serve as its Chairman for a second term, beginning on 5 March 2003. Grossenbacher is Director of the Swiss Federal Institute of Intellectual Property in Bern.

This is the first time in the EPO's 25-year history that the Administrative Council has exercised the option of reappointing its Chairman. The Organisation currently faces major challenges in the further integration of the European economic area and the extension of the European patent system to the countries of central and eastern Europe. Roland Grossenbacher emphasised his determination to maintain and enhance the role of the EPO both in Europe and in the worldwide network of the patent system. The EPO is an international organisation set up on 7 October 1977 by the contracting states to the European Patent Convention (EPC), which was signed in Munich in 1973. The Organisation has a current total of 24 member states - all the EU members plus Bulgaria, Cyprus, the Czech Republic, Estonia, Liechtenstein, Monaco, Slovakia, Switzerland and Turkey. Its task is to oversee the granting of European patents under the EPC by the European Patent Office, which is based in Munich.

The EPO's Administrative Council, made up of delegations from the member states, is the Organisation's legislative body. It is responsible for policy matters and supervises the activities of the Office. ots Original Text Service: European Patent Office Internet: http://www.presseportal.de For further information, please contact: Rainer Osterwalder Press Officer European Patent Office, Munich Phone: +4989/2399-5012, Fax: -2850 e-mail: rosterwalder@epo.org

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