Impact Of Economic Significance During Inventive Step Assessment In India

Indian Patent law in the year 1972 originally defined the term ‘invention’ as “any new and useful art, process, method or manner of manufacture, machine, apparatus or other article, substance produced by manufacture; and includes any new and useful improvement of any of them“. The phrase “inventive step” was not even included in the definition of invention back then. Later on in the year 2002, the phrase “inventive step” was included in the definition of “invention”. Also, the phrase “inventive step” was defined separately. More specifically, the term ‘invention’ was redefined as “a new product or process involving an inventive step and capable of industrial application” and ‘inventive step’ for the first time was defined as “a feature that makes the invention not obvious to a person skilled in the art”. After that in the year 2005, the phrase ‘inventive step’ was redefined “a feature of an invention that involves technical advance as compared to the existing knowledge or having economic significance or both and that makes the invention not obvious to a person skilled in the art”, whereas the definition of the term ‘invention’ remained the same as per amendments done in the year 2002.

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