Singapore Initiative Expedites Blockchain Patent Approval Process

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Fintech companies in Singapore will have patents approved faster thanks to an expedited patent application-to-grant process initiative announced by the Intellectual Property Office of Singapore (IPOS). Patents will be granted in as soon as six months, compared to two years minimum for normal applications, according to an announcement published on the IPOS website.

Low Yen Ling, senior parliamentary secretary for Ministry of Trade and Industry and Ministry of Education, announced the initiative at the 2018 World Intellectual Property Day event attended by more than 200 participants among 191 member states across the world.

Fintech Demand Rising

The initiative, part of the Republic’s Smart Nation agenda, will encourage enterprises and start-ups to develop solutions to meet the rising demand for fintech solutions in ASEAN, as well as operate effectively within Singapore’s financial infrastructure and regulatory policies.

The initiative will complement the Monetary Authority of Singapore’s $225 million Financial Sector Technology and Innovation funding scheme to boost fintech development in Singapore.

Singapore, along with London, is already the top-ranked fintech hub in the world,  according to a Deloitte study of 44 hubs, the ministry noted.

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Initiative Draws Accolades

“By significantly reducing the time needed for grant of a fintech patent, our innovative enterprises will be able to compete effectively through their intellectual property and use these intellectual assets to scale up and enter the world’s market,” said Daren Tang, chief executive of IPOS. “At the same time, we hope to see the emergence of more fintech innovations that will improve the way we transact in our daily lives, bringing greater value and convenience to our people, and paving the way to achieve our national goal of becoming a smart nation.”

“In an industry where time-to-market is critical, the expedited process for fintech patents will enable businesses to commercialize their products and services more quickly,” said Sopnendu Mohanty, chief fintech officer of MAS. “The fintech fast track will make Singapore more attractive as a destination for fintech firms, and help further strengthen Singapore’s fintech ecosystem.”

“The Singapore fintech sector is growing rapidly,” said Chia Hock Lai, president of the Singapore FinTech Association. “With innovation at its heart, a swifter patent application process will help companies come to market faster.”

“As we develop more sophisticated fintech solutions, the expedited patent application process will help companies with rich innovations, such as ours, gain a head start in bringing our technology and brand to the market,” said Branson Lee, co-founder of Morpheus Labs.

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