New Plant Varieties
– Republic Act (R.A.) No. 9168, otherwise known as the Philippine Plant Variety Protection Act of 2002.
Conditions of Protection
Conditions for the grant of the plant variety protection: the Certificate of Plant Variety Protection shall be granted for varieties that are: (a) new – means that the propagating or harvested material of the variety has not been sold, offered for sale or otherwise disposed of to others, by or with the consent of the breeder, for purpose of exploitation of the variety (i) in the Philippines for more than one year before the date of filing of an application for plant variety protection or (ii) in other countries or territories in which application has been filed for more than four years or, in the case of vines or trees, more than six years before the date of filing of an application for plant variety protection; (b) distinct – means that the variety is clearly distinguishable from any commonly known variety. The filing of an application for the granting of a plant variety protection or for the entering of a new variety in an official Register of variety in the Philippines or in any country, shall render the said variety a matter of public knowledge from the date of the said application; (c) uniform – means that it is sufficiently uniform in its relevant characteristics, subject to the variation that may be expected from the particular features of its propagation; and (d) stable – means its relevant characteristics remain unchanged after repeated propagation or, in the case of a particular cycle of propagation, at the end of each such cycle.
Entitlement: any breeder, with respect to the variety developed, may apply for a plant variety protection and obtain a Certificate of Plant Variety Protection.
First to file rule: if two or more persons develop a new plant variety separately and independently of each other, the Certificate of Plant Variety Protection shall belong to the person who files the application first. In case two or more persons file an application for the same plant variety, the right shall be granted to the person who has the earliest filing date or priority date.
National treatment: any application filed locally for a Certificate of Plant Variety Protection previously granted to a breeder in another country, which be treaty, convention or law affords similar privileges to Filipino citizens, shall be issued a Certificate of Plant Variety Protection upon payment of dues and compliance to all the provisions of this Act. The Act shall also apply to nationals of foreign countries who are members of inter-governmental organizations or party to any multilateral agreement or convention concerning the granting of intellectual property protection to plant varieties.
Term of protection: for trees and vines, twenty-five years from the date of grant of the Certificate of Plant Variety Protection and twenty years from the said date for all other types of plants.
Exceptions to plant variety protection: the Certificate of Plant Variety Protection shall not extend to: (a) acts for non-commercial purposes; (b) acts done for experimental purposes; (c) acts done for the purpose of breeding other varieties; (d) the traditional right of small farmers to save, use, exchange, share or sell their farm produce of a variety protected under this Act, except when a sale is for the purpose of reproduction under a commercial marketing agreement.