BruneiCapital: Bandar Seri Begawan
Capital Timezone: GMT + 8
Population: 415,717 (est. 2013)
Languages: Malay (official), English, Chinese, Malay, Tamil
Currency: Bruneian dollar (BND)
Legal System: English common law

Key Issues

• All litigation and prosecution in English
• Ranked 39th in the world for IP protection in the World Economic Forum’s Global Competitiveness Report 2013/2014


• Moved to a regular direct filing country on 1 January 2012. Prior to 1 January 2012, Brunei patents were obtained via re-registration of a Singapore, Malaysia or United Kingdom patent
• Limited patent cases to date
• Infringement remedies – damages based on costs or an account of profits, injunctions, and delivery up
• Innocent infringer defence
• Potential relief against groundless threats


• National phase entry deadline for PCT applications in Brunei: 30 months
• Patentable subject matter – all subject matter patentable except Methods of treatment of the human or animal body by surgery or therapy or of diagnosis or inventions that may encourage offensive, immoral or anti-social behaviour
• Patent obtained by one of three ways:
– Requesting local search and examination
– Requesting examination based on a search report (which includes an international search report) from an approved jurisdiction
– On the basis of final examination results received in an approved jurisdiction
• Applies a strict approach to “added matter” that is in alignment with the approach of the European Patent Office
• Double patenting is a ground of revocation
• Voluntary Divisional applications possible

Other Issues

• No pre or post-grant opposition
• Patent Term Extensions – possible
• Parallel importation – available except for pharmaceuticals under certain conditions
• Foreign filing license – required and breach is a criminal offence
• Patent-drug linkage
• Participant in the ASEAN Patent Examination Co-operation (ASPEC)

For more information contact us on or +61 7 3011 2200.