Tuesday, May 16 2023   \  Published by Tilleke & Gibbins .

Patenting AI Technology and Software in Southeast Asia

Patenting AI Technology and Software in Southeast Asia

Southeast Asia’s remarkable growth as a destination for foreign investment—including a 42 percent increase in 2021, according to a joint ASEAN-UNCTAD report—has brought with it innovation as well as the desire to protect that innovation. Investors are increasingly seeking to patent the proprietary technology that is a crucial component of so many businesses today, and a burning question for patent applicants is whether artificial intelligence (AI) technology and software are patentable in Southeast Asia. The short answer is that it depends, as the patent laws in Southeast Asia are not uniform.

Is it Patentable?

While AI tools tend to be newer, the older and more familiar question is whether computer software is patentable, and many jurisdictions do have specific rules on this issue. Pure software, or software characterized only by source code, may not be patentable, but it can be protected under copyright laws.

AI-related software may involve complex algorithms, datasets, and training methodologies that can be challenging to disclose in a manner that satisfies the enablement requirement in practice. Algorithms, mathematical methods, and abstract ideas are often considered non-patentable subject matter in many jurisdictions. While software implementing AI may involve innovative algorithms, securing patents for algorithms alone can be challenging in some jurisdictions. Read more

Ready to Get Started?

Contact Sales