The European Parliament has voted in favour of the creation of a common EU patent system using the enhanced cooperation procedure. The Council of Ministers will then formally adopt the decision authorising enhanced cooperation. This will clear the way for the European Commission to submit two legislative proposals: establishing the single patent and formalising the agreed upon language regime.
Currently, only Italy and Spain remain outside the system. The "enhanced co-operation" can be used to enable a group of Member States to adopt new common rules when a unanimous EU-wide agreement cannot be reached. Both countries may opt in at a later if they wish.