Last updated: 
23 July 2018

Draft legislation: Intellectual Property Laws Amendment Bill (Productivity Commission Response Part 2 and Other Measures) Bill 2018

IP Australia has released draft legislation for public comment. The legislation will implement further aspects of the Government’s response to the Productivity Commission’s (PC) inquiry into Australia’s intellectual property (IP) arrangements.

These measures are included in Schedule 1 to the Intellectual Property Laws Amendment (Productivity Commission Response Part 2 and Other Measures) Bill 2018 and include:

  • Amending inventive step requirements for Australian patents
  • Introducing an objects clause into the Patents Act 1990 (Patents Act)
  • Phasing out of the innovation patent system

The Bill also includes amendments to the Crown use provisions of the patents and designs legislation and compulsory licensing provisions in the Patents Act, in schedules 2-4.

Finally, draft legislation contains measures to streamline processes within the Patents and Trade Marks Acts and make technical improvements to the legislation. These measures are included in Schedules 5-7 to the draft Bill.

Legislation to implement earlier parts of the government response to the PC has been introduced into the Australian Parliament and passed the House of Representatives on 27 June 2018.

Draft legislation and explanatory materials

Previous consultation

IP Australia has previously consulted on the measures in schedules 1-4 of the Bill in the form of options papers. Details of the consultation, including the options paper, submissions received, and IP Australia’s response can be found on the IP Australia website.

IP Australia has also previously consulted on the phasing out of the innovation patent system in its consultation of the Exposure Draft and Draft Explanatory Memorandum of the Intellectual Property Laws Amendment (Productivity Commission Response Part 1 and Other Measures) Bill 2018.

Note that IP Australia has not previously consulted on amendments of the Schedules 5-7 to the draft Bill, however most proposals have been published on IP Australia’s register of new policy issues.

Making a submission

We are seeking comments on the draft legislation, particularly on any unintended consequences of this legislation or issues with the drafting, rather than on the policy objectives of the amendments as it has already been agreed to by the Government.

We are also seeking specific feedback to questions that are highlighted in the consultation questions. Please note that the draft explanatory material is still being developed and is intended only as a guide to assist with the interpretation of the draft legislation.

We invite all interested parties to make written submissions on the Exposure Drafts by 31 August 2018. Due to time constraints, we are unable to accept late submissions.

Please send submissions to

For accessibility reasons, please submit responses by email in Word, RTF, or PDF format.

Contact officer

Paul Gardner Ph: (02) 6283 2145 Email:; or Brett Massey Ph: (03) 9935 9666 Email:

Privacy Notice

Personal information is collected by IP Australia during this public consultation for the purposes of gaining stakeholder insights and comments on the proposed amendments to the Intellectual Property Rights legislation and regulations, and is protected by the Privacy Act 1988 (Privacy Act).

Your submission, along with any personal information you provide as part of that submission, will be published on IP Australia’s website. Information published online may be accessed world-wide, including by overseas entities. Once the information is published online, IP Australia has no control over its subsequent use and disclosure. You acknowledge and confirm that Australian Privacy Principle (APP) 8 will not apply to the disclosure. If any overseas recipient handles your personal information in breach of the APPs, you acknowledge and agree that IP Australia will not be accountable under the Privacy Act and you will not be able to seek redress under the Act.

If you would prefer that your submission, or any part of your submission, is not published on our website, please notify IP Australia in writing at, clearly identifying that the whole submission is confidential or the particular parts of the submission you consider to be confidential. IP Australia will not publish any submission or part of a submission that you have marked as confidential.

Your submission, including any personal information you provide, may be disclosed to the relevant Ministers and their offices, the Department of Industry, Innovation and Science and other Commonwealth government agencies (Recipients) including any relevant contractors providing services to the Recipients, for the purpose of briefing on the results of the consultation in general and/or about specific issues on which you have commented. This disclosure may occur whether or not your submission has been marked as confidential. Where contact details are provided, IP Australia may also contact you by telephone or email to discuss your submission.

Whilst the Recipients will review your submission and seriously consider it, there is no guarantee that all or part of your views will be included in any outcome of the government policy for which your consultation is being sought.

A request made under the Freedom of Information Act 1982 for access to a submission marked confidential will be determined in accordance with that Act.

IP Australia may use your personal information to contact you further regarding the outcomes of this consultation and to inform you of further progress and consultation on these legislative proposals that we think may be of interest to you.

IP Australia will not otherwise use or disclose your personal information without your consent, unless authorised or required by or under law.

IP Australia retains sole discretion to decide not to publish a submission or part thereof, or to remove any content, including but not limited to any content which is unlawful, defamatory or offensive from a submission before publishing it on IP Australia’s website.

All personal information you provide is handled in accordance with IP Australia’s Privacy Policy (Privacy Policy) and this privacy notice. The Privacy Policy contains relevant information, including:

  • how you may seek access to and correction of the personal information we hold;
  • how you may make a complaint about a breach of the Privacy Act and how we will deal with your complaint; and
  • IP Australia’s privacy contact officer details.

The Privacy policy can be located at

By making a public submission, you provide your consent to your personal information being handled in accordance with this privacy notice and the IP Australia Privacy Policy.