Patent laws in the region vary in their effectiveness. Regulations across jurisdictions to crack down on infringers are in a constant state of renewal and revision in order to stay ahead of those who steal intellectual property. Keeping the trolls at bay depends on staying abreast of regional developments in patent law

Regional comparison of patent law (Click to enlarge image)


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Intellectual property law was first introduced to Sri Lanka during the British colonial period through legislation. The first statute on intellectual property (IP) law was the British Inventor’s Ordinance, which was made applicable to Sri Lanka, and the first patent was granted under this statute in 1860.

Anomi WanigasekeraPartnerHead of IP DivisionJulius & CreasyTel: +94 11 2336277Email:
Anomi Wanigasekera
Head of IP Division
Julius & Creasy
Tel: +94 11 2336277

In 1907, the Patent Ordinance was enacted based on English patent law. The Patent Ordinance was in force until the Code of Intellectual Property Act No. 52 of 1979 was enacted, which repealed all previous IP statutes.

This code was divided into seven parts, and part IV included patents. The code was based on the WIPO (World Intellectual Property Organization) model Law.

In 2003, the Intellectual Property Act No. 36 of 2003 came into force, replacing the Code of Intellectual Property Act No. 52 of 1979, and it is the current law in operation since November 2003.

Intellectual Property Act No. 36 of 2003. Part IV of the IP Act refers to the law relating to patents. An Invention has been defined as an idea of an inventor, which permits in practice the solution to a specific problem in the field of technology. Both product and process patents are recognized in Sri Lanka.

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