Summary: Benoît Battistelli’s ‘back room’ deals came at an interesting, strategic time and the Office uncharacteristically kept quiet about these
It’s not unusual for Battistelli to give some money to nations (the smaller the economy, the cheaper) in order to garner support; some allege that he is simply buying votes in order to get his proposals approved and keep his job no matter how severe his abuses become. We previously mentioned this in relation to Lithuania, e.g. [1, 2]. We have seen that before in other countries as well; they seem to become ‘zombie’ states once the money lands on their lap, perhaps at the instructions/behest of the government officials who are recipients of monetary grants (‘gifts’).
Well, a reader sent us some information regarding something which we had completely missed (it was nowhere in the news, even though we watch these things very closely).
“Might be of interest,” our reader explained is the following:
A casual inspection of the official websites of the Lithuanian and Latvian Patent Offices revealed some recent reports of new bilateral “cooperation agreements” with the EPO. It seems that these agreements were signed last week on the margins of the Administrative Council’s quarterly meeting in Munich.
According to the report on the website of the Latvian Patent Office (translation): “On 15 March 2017 in Munich Latvian Patent Office Director Sandris Laganovskis and the European Patent Office (EPO) President Benoît Batistelli signed a new cooperation plan for patents for the next three years.”
The report on the website of the Lithuanian Patent Office reads as follows (translation): “State Patent Bureau (SPB) Director Arunas Želvys and the European Patent Office (EPO) President Benoît Battistelli this week signed a bilateral cooperation plan for the years 2017-2019, according to which international cooperation will be carried out with Lithuania in the field of industrial property protection projects.”
These reports do not appear on the English language pages of the websites. Also there is also no mention on the EPO’s website which is rather strange given Battistelli’s well-known predilection for loudly trumpeting about each and every bilateral agreement concluded in the most obscure corners of the globe.
It’s almost as if there is a concerted effort to bury this “news” because it might reveal too much about how the EPO operates and expose the unhealthy conflicts of interests that seem to compromise the activities of the Administrative Council.
In the meantime observers of the EPO are advised to keep a close eye on the voting records of Lithuania and Latvia which appear to be the latest additions to the list of Battistelli’s “vassal states”.
In the photo below, the Vice-President of DG5 Raimund Lutz can be seen (third from the left). Lutz is in charge of the EPO’s Legal and Internal Affairs department. Through his influence as the director of the EPO’s legal services and his role as the main legal advisor of the Administrative Council he is rumoured to be one of the chief architects and facilitators of Battistelli’s regime.
As we noted here several times recently, Battistelli is not meeting prominent politicians from large states anymore, as certainly they are aware of the scandals he’s presently embroiled in (like Blatter or Savile, where photo ops are a liability rather than bragging rights). █