BRUSSELS, July 1 (Xinhua) -- The European Commission Thursday proposed to cut the cost of obtaining a single European Union (EU) patent by slashing the number of languages requested to register the patent across the bloc.
The Commission proposed that a single EU patent could be registered in only three languages, namely English, German or French, which will greatly cut the translation costs.
EU member states reached an agreement last December on issuing a single EU patent but the language arrangement was left out. Patents currently need to be translated into the language of each EU member state where they are to become effective, which make the cost ten times higher than that in the United States.
The Commission said that a European patent validated for example in 13 countries would cost as much as 20,000 euros (about 24,800 U.S. dollars), of which nearly 14,000 euros (about 17,360 dollars) arises from translations alone.
By using only three languages, the cost could be reduced to 6, 200 euros (7,688 dollars), according to the proposal.
European Commissioner for Internal Market and Services Michel Barnier said that the cost of obtaining a patent within the EU is far too expensive and complicated.
"An EU Patent equally valid in all EU countries, is crucial to stimulate research and development and will drive future growth," he said.
"I now hope that member states will act quickly to ensure the EU patent becomes a reality," he said.