As a member of the African Intellectual Property Organization (OAPI), the People’s Republic of the Congo’s patent office is the OAPI’s Patent Office located in Cameroon. The OAPI is a union of sixteen African nations joined together under a sole intellectual property system. The OAPI countries not only share a common IP Office, but they share a common set of laws that can be applied the same by local courts in each member country.
Obtaining a Patent in Congo
To obtain a patent in the People’s Republic of the Congo, a patent application must be filed with the OAPI Patent Office in French or English. The application must include claims and a specification, though additional fees will be charged if the number of claims or the number of pages for the specification exceeds ten. If an application survives examination by the Office, it issues as a patent, which is valid for ten years with the option of renewal for two additional five year periods.
PCT National Stage in Congo
The OAPI and Congo are members of the Patent Cooperation Treaty and consequently recognize PCT filings that enter the national stage within 30 months of the priority date. The only national designation necessary is the OAPI to be recognized in all of its member countries.