05.02.16

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Governments in Europe Still Active Against EPO Management

Posted in Europe, Patents at 1:15 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Philip Cordery

Summary: There is still political work being done — albeit rather discreetly — against Battistelli and his goons at the European Patent Office’s top-level management

WE sometimes get the impression of defeatism among EPO staff. Some find it hard to believe that Battistelli will step down and dismissed staff representatives reintegrated into the workforce, even though work is still being done (usually more discreetly than before) towards that.

“As for the EPO situation,” one person told us about an insider, “s/he doesn’t expect much to change for the better, given the Administrative Council’s unwillingness to do anything other than, more or less, backing the president. S/He, too, appears to be very frustrated with the lack of action on the part of national governments, including our minister of (in)justice in Germany, who’s a sad joke in my opinion.”

“The Netherlands is increasingly concerned and so is France.”Germany, for reasons we have explained here several times before, feels comfortable turning a blind eye because it benefits financially from the EPO. But that doesn’t mean other countries too choose inaction. The Netherlands is increasingly concerned and so is France. The predominantly French management around Battistelli (his cronies and their family members) are becoming a national embarrassment that promotes perception of systemic corruption.

“The French MP Philip Cordery,” SUEPO wrote earlier today, “reported in a blog post dated 25 April 2016 about a joint letter (written with other French MPs: Pierre-Yves Le Borgn’, Richard Yung, Claudine Lepage, Jean-Yves Leconte and Hélène Conway-Mouret), dated 21 April 2016, to the French Minister of Economic Affairs Emmanuel Macron. The letter was sent “in order to demand once again that France take action towards a reform of the management of this international organization”.”

The PDF link/original in French [PDF] suggests ongoing work ‘behind the scenes’, so to speak, not for the first time from Mr. Cordery [1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7]. Cordery et al ought to know that Battistelli has become a source of great shame to France.

A translation of the blog post [PDF] (original) and a translation of the letter [PDF] in English was posted by SUEPO and here it is in English:

EPO: Keep up the pressure for management reform

Following the last meeting of the Administrative Council of the European Patent Office, I, together with a number of my colleagues representing French citizens established outside France, called upon the Minister of the Economy, Emmanuel Macron, in order to demand once again that France take action towards a reform of the management of this international organization.

And the accompanying letter:

Paris, 21 April 2016

Ref.: PC/AF/169

Minister,

We wish to draw your attention to the importance of the decisions taken at the last meeting of the Administrative Council of the European Patent Office.

We are pleased to note that a resolution was voted through, resulting from a compromise in order to obtain a majority. It has therefore been possible to focus on the social conflict and the imposition of sanctions and disciplinary procedures against EPO staff members. We welcome the role played by France, which, by your mediation, has accepted its responsibilities and mobilised its partners with regard to these issues.

We are now calling for the greatest vigilance on your part with regard to the effective implementation of the measures arising from this resolution. In our view it is essential that the persons concerned are given the opportunity to make recourse rapidly to an outside authority to re-examine the issues and act in arbitration with regard to the sanctions which may have been imposed on them, and that this be put into effect without any further delay.

The present immunity of the management of the EPO with regard to management of the staff and the choice of strategic attitudes adopted by the Office is a matter of great concern. It is arousing concern with regard to the future of this organization, and the development of innovation in Europe. The nationality and the status as a French executive of the President impose a particular responsibility on our country in the present situation. It is for this reason that in our view it is imperative that France, by way of its official representative on the Administrative Council, takes action such that a major change in the management of the Office can come into effect rapidly.

At the present time, the two staff union representatives who were dismissed in Munich have not been reinstated, and the degrading abuses of the statutes of the Office continue. Some
staff members at the Hague are still under investigation. One of them in particular has been deprived of any treatment as a result of failure to take account of his stopping work due to illness, giving rise to fear of possible dismissal. We therefore believe it to be essential that our own citizens, who are victims equally with the other staff members of the repressive managerial policy adopted by the President of the Office, be fully and continuously supported during this ordeal.

We are at your disposal to discuss these matters with you. More than ever, we are convinced that a major reform of the management of the EPO is essential, and we are eager that our
country should commit itself to this end, without any shortcomings.

We remain, Minister, yours faithfully

Philip Cordery

Pierre-Yves Le Borgn’

Richard Yung

Claudine Lepage

Jean-Yves Leconte

Hélène Conway-Mouret

Emmanuel MACRON
Minister of the Economy, Industry, and the Digital Sector
139, rue de Bercy
75572 Paris Cedex 12

Copy to Yves LAPIERRE
Director General
National Institute of Industrial Property

Assemblée Nationale – 126 rue de l’Université 75007 PARIS
pcordery@assemblee-nationale.fr – 01 40 63 06 58

There is action in additional EU member states against the EPO, but revealing details at this stage would potentially compromise actions. The EPO saga is far from over, in spite of the relative calm. Don’t be misled. Battistelli was advised to keep a low profile for a reason. It’s a massive reputation laundering operation.

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