25 July 2019

The Government has released its response to the Productivity Commission’s 2016 report on Australia’s IP arrangements (PC report).

Many of the IP recommendations require amendments to the legislation that IP Australia is responsible for. IP Australia proposes to implement these recommendations in a staged manner. 

1. Intellectual Property Laws Amendment (Productivity Commission Response Part 1 and Other Measures) Act 2018

This Act received Royal Assent on 24 August 2018. Further information on the Act and associated regulations can be viewed here.

IP Australia previously consulted on the draft legislation from 23 October to 4 December 2017.

This Act includes a number of accepted recommendations from the PC report including, the plant breeder’s rights (PBR) recommendation and the majority of the trade marks recommendations. This Act also includes a number of other high-priority trade mark and PBR issues, and some measures from the previously consulted on draft Intellectual Property Laws Amendment Bill 2017.

2. Intellectual Property Laws Amendment (Productivity Commission Response Part 2 and Other Measures) Bill 2019

This Bill includes a number of accepted recommendations from the PC report including introducing an objects clause into the Patents Act 1990 and phasing out of the innovation patent system. Changes to Crown use of patents and designs and compulsory licensing of patents are also included, along with a number of technical fixes and red-tape reducing measures.

Consultation on an exposure draft of this Bill took place between
23 July to 31 August 2018. The Bill was introduced into Parliament on 25 July 2019.