Law of Patents, Layout Designs of Integrated Circuits, Plant Varieties, and Industrial Designs

 

Law of

Patents, Layout Designs of

Integrated Circuits, Plant Varieties,

and Industrial Designs

 

Chapter One

General Provisions

Article One:

This Law aims to provide full protection - within the Kingdom - for inventions, layout designs of integrated circuits, plant varieties and industrial designs.

Article Two:

The following terms and phrases, wherever mentioned in this Law, shall have the meanings expressed next to them, unless the context requires otherwise:

City: King Abdulaziz City for Science and Technology.

Directorate: The General Directorate of Patents at King Abdulaziz City for Science and Technology.

Subject matter of protection: Either an invention, a layout design of integrated circuits, a plant variety or an industrial design.

Protection document: The document granted by the City for one of the subject matters of protection. It may either be a patent, a certificate of layout design, a plant patent, or a certificate of an industrial design.

Invention: An idea developed by the inventor that results in a solution of a certain problem in the field of technology.

Integrated circuit: A product in its final or intermediate form in which the elements, at least one of which is active, and some or all of the interconnections are integrally formed in or on a piece of material, and the purpose of this is to perform an electronic function.

Layout design: Three dimensional disposition of the elements – at least one of which is active - and of some or all of the interconnections of an integrated circuit, or such a three dimensional disposition prepared for an integrated circuit intended for manufacture.

Plant variety: A plant grouping within a single botanical taxon of the lowest known rank which, irrespective of whether the conditions for the grant of a breeders right are fully met, can be defined by the expression of the characteristics resulting from a given genotype or a combination of genotypes distinguished from any other plant grouping, by the expression of at least one of the said characteristics, and considered as units with regard to its suitability for being propagated without change.

Plant breeder: The person who breeds, discovers or develops a new plant variety.

Industrial design: A composition of two-dimensional lines or colors, or any three dimensional shape that gives an industrial product, or a product of traditional crafts, a special appearance provided that this is not only for functional or technical purpose including textile designs.

Compulsory license: The permission given to others to exploit the subject matter of protection without the consent of the owner of the protection document, in accordance with the provisions of this Law.

Contractual license: A contract under which the owner of the protection document grants a third party some or all of his rights to exploit the protection document for a specified period against a specified fee.

Gazette: The Gazette issued by the City concerning all that relates to the subject matters of protection in accordance with the provisions of this Law and its Implementing Regulations.

Committee: The committee stipulated in Article Thirty Five of this Law.

Table: The table annexed to this Law which specifies the fees for the works carried out by the Directorate in accordance with the provisions of this Law.

Applicant: The person requesting the protection document, as registered in the Directorate records.

Regulations: The Implementing Regulations of this Law.

 

Article Three:

The City shall have the authority to apply the provisions of this Law and its Implementing Regulations.

Article Four:

(a)         The protection document shall not be granted if its commercial exploitation violates the Shari'ah.

(b)         The protection document shall not be granted if its commercial exploitation is harmful to life, to human, animal or plant health, or is substantially harmful to the environment.

Article Five:

(a)   The protection document shall be a personal right of the person in whose name it was issued. This right may be transferred by inheritance, as well as with or without consideration.

(b)   If the subject matter of protection is a joint work of several persons, they shall be equally entitled to the right, unless they have agreed otherwise.

(c)    No one shall be deemed a partner unless he contributes to the subject matter of protection, and his efforts are only confined to assistance in its execution.

(d)   If more than one person have independently developed the same subject matter of protection, the protection document shall be granted to the first applicant.

(e)    The person who develops the subject matter of protection shall have the right to state his name in that capacity in the protection document.

 

Article Six:

(a)   The employer shall be the owner of the protection document, unless the work contract stipulates otherwise, where its subject matter results from the execution of a contract, or an obligation providing for exerting efforts to develop it, or if the employer proves that the employee would not have developed the subject matter of the protection had he not used facilities, means or data made available through his employment.

(b)   This shall be without prejudice to the employee’s right to receive a special award to be agreed upon with the consent of both parties, or assessed by the Committee in light of the various circumstances of the contract of employment, and the economic importance of the subject matter of the protection. Any special agreement depriving the employee of this right shall be null and void.

(c)    An application for a protection document filed by the employee within two years from the date of termination of employment shall be deemed as if submitted during the employment. 

(d)   The previous provisions shall apply to government employees.

(e)    If the subject matter of protection developed relates to national security, it shall be governed by the provisions stipulated in the Implementing Regulations.

Article Seven:

If the subject matter claimed in the application or in the protection document is derived from a subject matter owned by a person other than the applicant or the owner of the protection document, then this person may request the Committee to transfer the ownership of the application or protection document to him. The case for the transfer application shall not be heard after the elapse of five years of granting the protection unless the applicant's bad faith is established.

 

Article Eight:

The application for granting protection document shall be submitted to the Directorate in the prescribed form. The Regulations shall specify the information and documents required to be enclosed with the application. If the applicant is not the party which developed the subject matter of protection, his name must be stated and the document proving the transfer of title of the patented subject matter to him must be enclosed, and the Directorate may, in this case, send a copy of these documents to the party which developed the subject matter of protection. After satisfying the requirements and payment of the specified fee, the application shall be registered. 

Article Nine:

The applicant may introduce the amendments he deems fit in the application, provided that these amendments shall introduce no change to what was disclosed in the original application.

Article Ten:

(a)   The applicant may benefit from the priority given to a previous application filed during the priority period specified for each of the subject matters of protection, from the filing date of the previous application, provided that it is accompanied by a written declaration stating the date and number of the previous application and the place where it was filed by him or his predecessor. He shall also submit a copy of the previous application approved by the authority where the protection application was submitted, within ninety days from the date of filing the application with the Directorate.

(b)   The priority period for patents and plant varieties shall be twelve months.

(c)    The priority period for the industrial design shall be six months.

Article Eleven:

The Directorate shall publish applications for patents on invention and plant varieties within eighteen months from the date of filing the application, after paying the specified fee.

Article Twelve:

The Directorate shall examine the registered applications in terms of formalities. If it appears, from the examination, that some of the legally prescribed conditions are not satisfied it may instruct the applicant to satisfy them within a maximum of ninety days from the date of notification. If he did not fulfill what was requested within the said period, his application would be considered as if it had never been filed.

Article Thirteen:

Once the application for patent or plant patent has been examined in terms of formalities, it shall be examined in terms of substance, in accordance with what is stated in the Regulations.

Article Fourteen:

(a)      If the Directorate finds that the application has satisfied the stipulated conditions, it shall issue a decision granting the protection document. The said decision shall be published in sequence as regard to its issuance by the Directorate.

(b)      If the Directorate finds that the applicant does not qualify for the protection document, it shall issue a decision stating the reasons for the rejection, and the applicant shall be notified thereof.

Article Fifteen:

The applicant may withdraw his application at any time unless it has been finally decided upon. However, such withdrawal shall not give the right to recover the fees paid or any other expense.

Article Sixteen:

Any action resulting in the assignment of the protection application or the protection document itself must be in writing, signed by the two parties, and approved by an authority acceptable to the Directorate. No transfer of title, relating either to the protection application or the protection document itself shall be effective vis-à-vis a third party, except after filing the change application, paying the required fees, and recording it in the Directorate registers.

If several parties participated in filing one protection application or in the ownership of one protection document each one of them may assign his right in the application or the protection document to any of the partners, to all of them, or to a third party. The Directorate shall publish the transfer of title in the Gazette.

Article Seventeen:

If the protection document is disposed of to others in accordance with any act of disposition, or the right to exploit it is transferred to others for any reason, the owner of the protection document shall inform the party to whom the disposition is made or the party to whom the right of exploitation is officially transferred, of any legal measure taken in connection with the protection document, whether taken by him or by others against him.

Article Eighteen:

(a)   Annual fees shall be due for the protection application or the protection document – in accordance with the table attached to this Law – which shall be paid at the beginning of each year starting from the year following the application filing date.

If the applicant or the owner of the protection document fails to pay it within a maximum period of three months from its due date, he shall be liable to pay double the amount. If he fails to pay after being warned during the three months following the expiration of the first three months, the application or the protection document shall cease to be valid, and this shall be recorded in the Register and published in the Gazette.

(b)   Where the applicant has paid the required fees for three years without being granted the protection document, he may postpone payment of the fees for the following years until the decision to grant the protection document is issued.

Article Nineteen:

(a)    The patent protection period shall be twenty years from the  date of filing the application.

(b)    The layout design certificate protection period shall be ten years from the date of filing the application or ten years from the date of start of its commercial exploitation anywhere in the world. In any case, the protection period may not exceed fifteen years from the date of creation of the design.

(c)     The plant patent protection period shall be twenty years from the date of filing the application. However, the protection period for trees shall be twenty five years.

(d)    The industrial design certificate protection period shall be ten years from the date of filing the application.

 

Article Twenty:

If a person, in good faith, manufactures a product, utilizes a process, manufactures an integrated circuit incorporating a layout design or a commodity including such a circuit, exploits a plant variety or makes serious arrangements, before the date of filing the patent application, or the priority application relating to that product or the process, design, plant variety, date of first commercial exploitation of the design anywhere in the world, such a party shall be entitled – despite the issuance of the protection document – to continue to perform these acts without expanding them. This right shall not be assigned or transferred to others except with all parts of the firm or one of them including goodwill.

 

Article Twenty One: 

The owner of the protection document may grant a contractual license to others to perform all or some of the acts of exploitation stipulated in the special provisions, for each protected subject matter. A license contract shall not be valid vis-à-vis a third party unless the specified fee is paid and it is registered in the records of the Directorate. This license shall not deprive the owner of the protection document from exploiting the subject matter himself or granting another license for the same protected subject matter, unless the first license contract states otherwise.

 

Article Twenty Two:

The Directorate may instruct the parties to the license contract to amend it in order to prevent abusing the right in the protection document or any other negative effect on competition or the acquisition of technology and its dissemination.

Article Twenty Three:

The license gives the licensee the right to perform all acts and enjoy all privileges assigned to the holder of the protection document related to the subject of protection throughout the Kingdom during the whole period of protection, unless it is otherwise stated in the license contract. The licensee shall not assign the rights and privileges licensed to him by the owner of the protection document, unless it is expressly stated in the license contract.

 

Article Twenty Four:

(a)    The City may grant a compulsory license to a third party to exploit an invention covered by the patent or a layout design of an integrated circuit covered by a certificate of design upon an application submitted to it, according to the following:

(1)    The application shall be submitted after the elapse of four years from the date of filing the patent application or three years from the date of granting the patent, whichever expires later, without the owner of the protection document exploiting his invention or having exploited it in an inadequate fashion, unless he justifies that with a legitimate excuse.

(2)    The applicant for the compulsory license must prove that he has exerted -over a reasonable period of time- efforts in order to obtain a contractual license on the basis of reasonable commercial conditions, and for a reasonable financial compensation. However, this provision and the provision of the preceding paragraph do not apply where the applicant is a government body or a person authorized by it, and the aim was to meet public interest - especially security, health, nutrition or the development other vital sectors of the national economy- or to meet a state of emergency or other very compelling circumstances, or where the aim thereof was public non-commercial purposes. In the latter case, and upon knowledge of the existence of a patent or a certificate of design, their holder shall be promptly informed.

(3)    The compulsory license is basically granted to make the invention or design available in the local markets. But this provision does not apply where the aim of the license is to prevent or restrict practices against which a decision or judgment is issued declaring them to be acts of unlawful competition.

(4)    The decision granting the license shall specify the scope and term of the license, according to the purpose for which it was granted. The license shall be subject to termination if the conditions for which it was granted cease to exist and their recurrence is not likely, with due regards to the lawful interests of the licensee.

(5)    The license shall not be exclusive.

(6)    Each application shall be independently decided.

(7)    The owner of the protection document or the holder of a certificate of a design shall be awarded a fair compensation. The Committee shall determine the amount of the compensation, and the licensee undertakes to pay it.

(b)    If the compulsory license is related to a patent of semiconductor technology, the purpose of the license shall be for public non-commercial purposes only or to control acts concerning which a decision or judgment is issued declaring them to be acts of unlawful competition.

(c)    If the patent involves a significant technological advance with a considerable economic value, which requires the exploitation of another patent, the City may grant that owner of the protection document a compulsory license to exploit the other patent. In such a case the compulsory license shall not be assigned unless the other patent is assigned. The owner of the other patent shall be entitled to a counter license from the compulsory licensee, in accordance with reasonable conditions.

 

Article Twenty Five:

(a)   The City may grant a compulsory license to a third party to exploit a plant variety patented by a plant patent, upon an application submitted to it in accordance with the following:

(1)   The compulsory license is necessary to protect public interest.

(2)   The applicant for the compulsory license being able financially and technically.

(3)   Failure of the applicant to obtain a license from the owner of the plant patent at reasonable terms.

(4)   The elapse of three years between the date of granting the plant patent and the date of applying for the compulsory license.

(5)   The compulsory license shall not be restricted to performing all or some of the acts referred to in Article 56 of this Law to meet the needs of the local market.

(6)   The owner of the patent shall be awarded a fair compensation. The Committee shall determine the amount of compensation, and the licensee shall undertake to pay it.

(b)   The City may instruct the owner of the plant patent to provide the holder of a compulsory license with the required quantity of propagation material for the use of the compulsory license in a reasonable fashion.

(c)    In other than exceptional circumstances, the compulsory license shall not be granted for a period less than two years or more than four years. The City may extend the term for additional periods, upon verifying that the grounds for granting the compulsory license still exist.

 

Article Twenty Six:

If a compulsory license is granted for a patented subject matter the beneficiary of the compulsory license may not assign it to others, unless the assignment includes all or part of the firm benefiting from the license or its goodwill. The City’s approval of the assignment is required; otherwise, it shall be null and void. If the City approves such assignment, the assignee becomes liable for the obligations assumed by the first beneficiary prior to the approval of the assignment.

Article Twenty Seven:

The City may amend the decision to grant the compulsory license if need arises. The owner of the protection document or the beneficiary of the compulsory license may request the City to make this amendment if its pre-requisites are fulfilled. The reasons for the decision of the City to amend the license or to reject the request must be stated.

Article Twenty Eight:

The City shall cancel the compulsory license in the following cases:

(a)         If the beneficiary of the license fails to exploit it in a way that satisfies the Kingdom’s needs, within two years from the grant of the license, renewable for an equal period, if it is proved that there is a legitimate cause.

(b)         If the beneficiary of the compulsory license fails to pay the due fees within ninety days from the due date, including the compensations to which the owner of the protection document is entitled, as stipulated in the decision granting the license.

(c)          If the beneficiary of the compulsory license fails to observe any condition necessary for granting of the license.

Article Twenty Nine:

The beneficiary of the compulsory license may relinquish the license by a written request to the City. However, the relinquishment becomes effective from the date of approval of the City.

Article Thirty:

Decisions of compulsory license, its amendment, withdrawal, transference to others and relinquishment shall be entered in the records of the Directorate, published in the Gazette and notified to the owner of the protection document.

Article Thirty One:

The owner of the protection document may relinquish it by submitting a written request to the City. The relinquishment may be confined to one or more of the stated elements of protection. However, relinquishment of the protection document, in case of compulsory license, shall only be accepted with a written consent of the beneficiary of the license, or the proof of the existence of compelling circumstances justifying this relinquishment. The relinquishment shall be registered and published in the Gazette, and it shall not be effective against a third party except from the date of publication.

 

Article Thirty Two:

Any party with interest may challenge the decision of granting of a protection document before the Committee, and seek total or partial revocation, relying upon the violation of the stipulated conditions for granting the protection document. The owner of the protection document shall include the beneficiary of the license as a party to the lawsuit; otherwise, the latter may interfere on his own. The Committee may order to enter any party with interest, and the Implementing Regulations shall specify the grounds upon which the request for the revocation of any protection document shall be based.

Article Thirty Three:

A judgment of total or partial invalidity of the decision granting the protection document renders the decision null and void from the date of issuance, within the scope of what is nullified. However, the decision to nullify the protection document shall not imply a refund of the sums paid for the license to exploit it, unless the licensee proves that what he has gained, as a result of the license, is not equal to what he has paid, in which case he may recover the amount exceeding the gain he received. The decision of annulment of granting the protection document shall be published after its issuance, and shall be effective vis-à-vis a third party from the date of publication.

Article Thirty Four:

Any act of exploitation provided for in the special provisions governing each of the protection subject matters, performed by any person in the Kingdom without a written consent of the owner of the protection document recorded with the Directorate, shall be deemed an infringement on the subject matter of protection. At the request of the owner of the protection document, and any party with interest, the Committee shall grant an injunction to prevent the infringement in addition to the necessary damages, and it may impose a fine upon the infringer not exceeding one hundred thousand riyals. The maximum fine shall be doubled in case of repetition. If the Committee sees that the infringement calls for the punishment of imprisonment, the infringer shall be referred from the start to the Board of Grievances. The Committee may take the necessary prompt measures it deems necessary to prevent the damages resulting from the infringement.

The decision issued by the Committee in this case shall be published in the Official Gazette, the Gazette and two daily newspapers, at the expense of the party against whom the decision is issued. The provision of this article shall be applied, without prejudice, to any harsher punishment provided for in any other law.

Article Thirty Five:

(a)    A committee shall be formed of three law specialists and two technical experts whose grade shall not be lower than grade twelve.

(b)     The members shall be nominated by the President of the City.

(c)     The formation of the Committee shall be pursuant to a resolution by the Council of Ministers for a term of three years renewable for one time only. The resolution shall appoint one of the law specialists as chairman of the Committee.

Article Thirty Six:

(a)    The Committee shall have jurisdiction over the following:

(1)   All disputes and appeals against decisions issued in connection with protection documents.

(2)    Penal lawsuits for violations of the provisions of this Law and its Implementing Regulations. 

(b)    The litigants shall be notified of the lawsuits filed with the Committee, in accordance with the Implementing Regulations.

Article Thirty Seven:

Decisions of the Committee shall be issued by majority vote, provided that the grounds for the decisions are stated, and their text is read in a public session. The Committee shall not refuse to issue a decision in the lawsuit on the ground that there is no provision to govern the dispute in the Law or the Implementing Regulations. In that case the Committee shall refer to the general rules observed in the Kingdom. An appeal against any decision issued by the Committee may be brought before the Board of Grievances within sixty days from the date of notification of the decision.

Article Thirty Eight:

The Committee may contact the government bodies concerned and request any explanation and information it deems necessary. The City shall provide the Committee with all documents and papers relating to applications or subject matters of protection in dispute, whenever requested to do so by the Committee.

Article Thirty Nine:

The Committee may seek the assistance of different expert bodies for whatever it deems necessary of the technical matters referred to it, and it shall determine the litigants liable for the expenses incurred.

Article Forty:

Reviewing of the protection documents and any related information registered with the Directorate may be allowed free of charge. Any person may obtain copies therefrom, upon payment of the required fees.

Article Forty One:

Employees of the Directorate and members of the Committee shall not disclose technical information relating to the protection applications of which they become cognizant in their capacity to any person, unless such person is officially authorized to receive that information in accordance with the rules applicable in the Kingdom. They shall also not disclose such information to the public, or use it in any way. This undertaking continues after the end of their service.

Employees of the Directorate and members of the Committee may not obtain any of the protection documents or deal in any of the rights relating to them during their service and for two years after the end of service.

 

Article Forty Two:

Fees payable under the provisions of this Law shall be determined in accordance with the Table attached hereto, which may be amended by a resolution of the Council of Ministers upon the recommendation of the President of the City.

 

Chapter Two:

Special Provisions Governing Patents

Article Forty Three:

A patent may be issued on an invention, in accordance with the provisions of this Law, if it is new, involves an inventive step, and capable of industrial application. The invention may be a product, a process or relates to either.

Article Forty Four:

(a)   An invention is new if it is not anticipated by prior art. In this respect, prior art means all that is disclosed to the public anywhere by means of written or oral disclosure, by use or by any other way through which knowledge of the invention is realized. This has to be prior to the filing date of the patent application or the priority application. The disclosure of the invention to the public shall not count if it takes place during the priority period. The Regulations shall specify other cases of invention disclosure which do not fall within the meaning of prior art and the provisions governing temporary protection of inventions.

(b)   An invention is deemed to involve an inventive step if, with regard to prior art related to the patent application, it is not obvious to a person with ordinary skills in the art.

(c)    An invention is deemed industrially applicable if it can be manufactured or used in any type of industry or agriculture, including handicrafts, fishing and services.

 

Article Forty Five:

In the application of provisions of this Law, the following shall not be regarded as inventions:

(a)   Discoveries, scientific theories and mathematical methods.

(b)   Schemes, rules and methods of conducting commercial activities, exercising pure mental activities or playing a game.

(c)    Plants, animals and processes – which are mostly biological – used for the production of plants or animals, with the exception of micro-organisms, non- biological and microbiology processes.

(d)   Methods of surgical or therapeutic treatment of human or animal body and methods of diagnosis applied to human or animal bodies, with the exception of products used in any of these methods.

Article Forty Six:

The application shall relate to a single invention or to a group of integrated parts that form a single inventive concept. The applicant, before a decision to grant him a patent is made, may divide his application into more than one, provided that none of them shall deviate from what was disclosed in the original application. The date of filing the original application or the date of priority shall be deemed to be the date of filing of these applications.

Article Forty Seven:

The owner of the protection document may initiate an action before the Committee against any person who infringes his invention by exploiting it in the Kingdom without his consent. The following shall be deemed as exploitation of the invention:

(a)   If it is a product: Its manufacture, sale, offering for sale, use, storage or its importation for any of these purposes.

(b)   If it is a process: The use of the process, or performing any of the acts referred to in the pervious paragraph, in relation to the product which is directly obtained by the use of this process.

However, the owner of the protection document’s right shall not preclude others from exploiting his invention in non-commercial activities relating to scientific research.

Article Forty Eight:

Subject to the legitimate interests of the defendant in protecting his industrial and commercial secrets, if the subject matter of the patent claimed to be infringed is a process to manufacture a certain product, the defendant must prove that the identical product was not manufactured by this process without the consent of the owner of the protection document, if one of the following two conditions is satisfied:

(a)   Where the product obtained through a patented process is a new product.

(b)   Where there is a substantial probability that the identical product was manufactured through the patented process, and the owner of the protection document was unable to determine the method actually used, by exerting reasonable efforts in this respect.

Chapter Three

Provisions Governing Layout Designs of Integrated Circuits.

Article Forty Nine:

An application for registration of a layout design of an integrated circuit may be filed, if the design has not been commercially exploited before or was subject to commercial exploitation for a period not exceeding two years in any part of the world.

Article Fifty:

The certificate of layout design shall be granted, if the layout design is original; i.e., a result of its creator’s own intellectual effort, and is not commonplace among creators of designs and manufacturers of integrated circuits at the time of its creation. As to a design that consists of a combination of elements and  interconnections that are commonplace, it shall be deemed original if the whole combination is original.

Article Fifty One:

The owner of the certificate of design may initiate an action before the Committee against any person who infringes his design by exploiting it without his consent inside the Kingdom. The performance of any of the following acts shall be deemed to be exploitation of the design:

(a)   Reproducing the whole design or any original part of it, whether by incorporation in an integrated circuit or otherwise. Acts relating to personal purposes, or scientific purposes such as research, analysis, education or evaluation shall not be deemed to be infringement.

(b)   Importing, selling or distributing a design, or any integrated circuit in which a design is incorporated. It shall also be deemed to be infringement the performance of any of the acts referred to in this paragraph in relation to any article incorporating such an integrated circuit, if this circuit contains an unlawfully reproduced design.

Article Fifty Two:

The rights conferred by the certificate of design are confined to acts performed for commercial purposes. The owner of the certificate shall not be entitled to exercise his rights in relation to an identical original design independently created by another party. These rights do not extend to any other original design created on the basis of analyzing or evaluating the protected design, nor to any integrated circuit in which the other design is incorporated.

Article Fifty Three:

Acts mentioned in paragraph (b) of Article Fifty One shall not be deemed an infringement, if exercised or ordered to be performed by a person who does not know or has no reasonable grounds to know - when acquiring the integrated circuit or the article incorporating such circuit– that it incorporated an unlawfully reproduced design. He may perform these acts in relation to the stock on hand or ordered before he had received a  sufficient notice that the design was unlawfully reproduced. He shall, however, pay the owner of the certificate of design a fair compensation estimated by the Committee on the basis of licenses granted pursuant to contractual negotiation.

Chapter Four

Provisions Governing the Protection of New Plant Varieties

Article Fifty Four:

The plant variety shall be patentable if it is new, distinct, uniform and stable, and proceedings have been taken to designate a denomination for it.

Article Fifty Five:

(a)   The plant variety shall be deemed new if, at the date of filing the application or the date of the claimed priority, propagating or harvested materials of the variety have not been sold or otherwise made available to others by the breeder or with his consent, for the purposes of exploiting the variety in accordance with the following:

(1)   In the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia for more than one year.

(2)   In other countries for more than four years or, in case of trees or vines, for more than six years.

(b)   The plant variety shall be deemed distinct if it is clearly distinguishable from any other variety whose existence is a matter of common knowledge at the time of filling the application or the time of the claimed priority. The Regulations shall specify the cases in which the existence of the plant variety is a matter of common knowledge.

(c)    The plant variety shall be deemed uniform if, subject to the variation that may be expected from the particular features of its propagation, it is sufficiently uniform in its basic characteristics.

(d)   The plant variety shall be deemed stable if its basic characteristics remain unchanged after repeated propagation or at the end of each given propagation cycle.

(e)    The plant variety shall be named by specifying its genus and species, and the denomination must enable people to identify it.

Article Fifty Six:

(a)   The plant owner of the protection document may initiate an action before the Committee against any person who infringes the patented variety by exploiting the propagating material of the patented variety without his consent inside the Kingdom. The following shall be deemed to be exploitation of the propagating material of the patented variety:

(1)   Producing or propagating it.

(2)   Conditioning it for purposes of propagation.

(3)   Exporting it.

(4)   Importing it.

(5)   Offering it for sale, selling it or any other sort of marketing.

(6)   Stocking it for any of the above purposes.

(b)   Rights stipulated in paragraph (a) of this Article include harvested material of the variety, including the whole plant or part thereof obtained by unlawful use of the propagating material of the variety. This applies where the owner of the protection document of the plant patent was not given a reasonable chance to exercise his rights in relation to the propagating material of the said variety.

(c)    Rights stipulated in paragraphs (a) and (b) extend to the varieties derived essentially from the protected variety if it is not possible to distinguish such varieties clearly, in accordance with paragraph (b) of Article Fifty Five of this Law, from the said protected variety, or that the production of these varieties requires the repeated use of the said protected variety.

(d)   Rights stipulated in paragraphs (a), (b) and (c) of this Article shall not extend to acts performed for non-commercial personal purposes or for experimental purposes or for purposes of breeding new varieties.

Article Fifty Seven:

The right conferred by the plant patent shall not be restricted by any measure taken to regulate the operations of producing the materials of plant varieties, their monitoring, marketing, importation and exportation.

Article Fifty Eight:

The owner of the plant patent is obligated to do the following:

(a)   Maintain the protected variety or, when necessary, its hereditary components for the whole duration of the term of protection.

(b)   Provide the City, upon its request, and within the specified period, with information, documents or necessary materials to prove his maintenance of  the variety.

(c)    Propose a suitable denomination for the variety, within the specified period, in case its denomination was cancelled by the City.

(d)   Provide the City when necessary, upon its request and within the specified period, with reasonable samples of the protected variety or its hereditary components for the following purposes.

(1)   Establishing or renewing the official sample of the variety.

(2)   Undertaking a comparative test of other varieties for purposes of protection.

In case the owner of the plant patent does not observe any of these obligations, the plant patent shall be forfeited after notifying him of the necessity of fulfilling his obligation and giving him a reasonable grace period to fulfill the obligation he has violated. In all cases the forfeiture of the plant patent shall be entered in the register and published in the Gazette. The Regulations shall specify the grace periods stated in this Article.

 

Chapter Five

Special Provisions Governing Industrial Designs

Article Fifty Nine:

The industrial design certificate shall be granted, if it is novel and has features that distinguish it from known industrial designs. The industrial design shall be deemed novel if it was not disclosed to the public through publication anywhere in a tangible form, by use or by any other way, prior to the date of filing the registration application or the priority application. Disclosure of the industrial design to the public shall have no effect if it occurs during the priority period. The Regulations shall determine the other cases of disclosure which have no effect, as well as the provisions governing temporary protection of industrial designs.

Article Sixty:

The owner of the industrial design certificate may initiate an action before the Committee against any person who infringes the industrial design by exploiting it for commercial purposes without his consent within the Kingdom through manufacture, sale or importation of a product that includes or represents a wholly or substantially copied industrial design.

 

Chapter Six

Concluding Provisions

Article Sixty One:

Without prejudice to what Article Thirty Four stipulates, any party that violates any of the provisions provided for in this Law shall be punished with a fine not exceeding fifty thousand riyals, and the maximum limit shall be doubled in case of repetition.

 

Article Sixty Two:

Grace periods and time limits stated in this Law shall be in accordance with what is provided for by the international agreements in this respect.

Article Sixty Three:

 

The President of the City shall issue the Implementing Regulations for this Law, within one hundred eighty days from the date of its coming into effect. They shall be published in the Official Gazette. He shall also issue the necessary decisions for implementing the provisions of this Law.

Article Sixty Four:

This Law shall replace the Patent Law issued by the Royal Decree No. (M/38) dated 10/6/1409H, and its provisions shall govern the patent applications and the patents in force, and shall supersede all provisions that are inconsistent therewith.

Article Sixty Five:

This Law shall be published in the Official Gazette and shall come into force after thirty days from the date of publication.

 

 

Table of fees referred to in Article Forty Two

 

No.

Fees

Patent

Industrial Designs

Designs of Integrated Circuits

New Plants Varieties

1

Registration application

Individuals

Establishment

Individuals

Establishment

Individuals

Establishment

Individuals

Establishment

400

800

150

300

500

1000

500

1000

2

Change or transfer of ownership

200

400

75

150

500

1000

500

1000

3

Amendment or addition to the application

100

200

50

100

250

500

100

200

4

Obtaining a copy of the application or certificate

50

100

50

100

50

100

50

100

5

Registration of license contracts

400

800

150

300

500

1000

500

1000

6

Grant of compulsory license

4000

8000

1500

3000

2500

5000

2500

5000

7

Grant and publication

500

1000

175

350

500

1000

500

1000

8

Annual fees

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

8/1

First year

250

500

150

300

500

1000

500

1000

8/2

Second year

500

1000

150

300

750

1500

500

1000

8/3

Third year

750

1500

300

600

1000

2000

750

1500

8/4

Fourth year

1000

2000

300

600

1250

2500

750

1500

8/5

Fifth year

1250

2500

450

900

1500

3000

1000

2000

 

(Continuation: Table…) 

 

8/6

Sixth year

1500

3000

450

900

1750

3500

1000

2000

8/7

Seventh year

1750

3500

600

1200

2000

4000

1250

2500

8/8

Eighth year

2000

4000

600

1200

2250

4500

1250

2500

8/9

Ninth year

2250

4500

750

1500

2500

5000

1500

3000

8/10

Tenth year

2500

5000

750

1500

2750

5500

1500

3000

8/11

Eleventh year

2750

5500

 

 

 

 

1750

3500

8/12

Twelfth year

3000

6000

 

 

 

 

1750

3500

8/13

Thirteenth year

3250

6500

 

 

 

 

2000

4000

8/14

Fourteenth year

3500

7000

 

 

 

 

2000

4000

8/15

Fifteenth year

3750

7500

 

 

 

 

2250

4500

8/16

Sixteenth year

4000

8000

 

 

 

 

2250

4500

8/17

Seventeenth year

4250

8500

 

 

 

 

2500

5000

8/18

Eighteenth year

4500

9000

 

 

 

 

2500

5000

8/19

Nineteenth year

4750

9500

 

 

 

 

2750

5500

8/20

Twentieth year

5000

10000

 

 

 

 

2750

5500

8/21

Twenty first year to twenty fifth year for protection of trees

3500

7000