Last updated: 
11 December 2017

From 23 October to 4 December 2017 IP Australia released draft legislation for public comment that includes measures to implement 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 1 and Other Measures) Bill 2017.

The draft Bill and associated regulations include amendments to:

  • commence the abolition of the innovation patent system (PC recommendation 8.1)
  • expand the scope of essentially derived variety declarations in the Plant Breeder’s Rights (PBR) Act (PC recommendation 13.1)
  • reduce the grace period for filing non-use applications under the Trade Marks Act (PC recommendation 12.1(a))
  • clarify the circumstances in which the parallel importation of trade marked goods does not infringe a registered trade mark (PC recommendation 12.1(c))
  • repeal section 76A of the Patents Act, which requires patentees to provide certain data relating to pharmaceutical patents with an extended term (PC recommendation 10.1).

The draft legislation also includes amendments to allow PBR exclusive licensees to take infringement actions, and for the award of additional damages, under the PBR Act, measures intended to streamline a number of processes for the IP rights that IP Australia administers, and a number of technical amendments. Further information on the main PBR changes is available here. These items are included in Schedule 2 to the draft Bill. Some of these measures have already undergone consultation, however implementation was previously delayed until the Government response to the PC inquiry was released. Note that IP Australia has not previously consulted on amendments in Parts 1, 11, 12, 18, 19 and 21 of Schedule 2 to the Bill (and their equivalents in the draft regulations).

There will be further measures and amendments required to implement other aspects of the Government’s response to the PC Inquiry (Part 2) following this first Bill and associated regulations (Part 1). Separate consultation on the Part 2 measures related to the Government response is now complete.

Draft legislation and explanatory materials

These materials are available in Word version

Or in PDF version

Submissions received 

The consultation period closed 4 December 2017. 

We received 19 non-confidential submissions from the following:

Aristocrat Technologies Australia

Australian Nurserymen’s Fruit Improvements Company (ANFIC)

Australian Seed Federation (ASF)

Christopher Prescott

CropLife Australia

Davies Collison Cave Law Pty Ltd

Dr Ana Penteado

FICPI Australia (Australian Federation of Intellectual Property Attorneys)

Gilbert+Tobin

Grains Research and Development Corporation (GRDC)

Institute of Patent and Trade Mark Attorneys (IPTA)

International Trademark Association (INTA)

Kenta Kitamoto

Law Council of Australia (LCA)

Law Institute of Victoria (LIV)

National Farmers Federation (NFF)

PGG Wrightson Seeds

Shimano Oceania Holdings

Warwick Rothnie

Contact officer

Brett Massey Ph: (03) 9935 9666 Email: brett.massey@ipaustralia.gov.au; or Lisa Bailey Ph: (02) 6222 3695, Email: lisa.bailey@ipaustralia.gov.au.