Compulsory licensing: clarify the scope of 'reasonable requirements of the public' test in Patents Act

At a glance

Policy ID: 2

Status: Completed

Priority: High

Patents Productivity commission Compulsory licensing

Issue summary

The Productivity Commission in its 2013 report on compulsory licensing recommended that a public interest test should replace existing criteria based on the 'reasonable requirements of the public' in the Patents Act. This would aim to provide an access regime when greater use of a patented invention would deliver a substantial net benefit to the community.


  • Consultation 30 August 2017 to 17 November 2017
  • Policy development 20 November 2017
  • Legislative drafting 26 March 2018
  • Consultation 23 July 2018 to 31 August 2018
  • Legislative drafting 1 September 2018
  • In Parliament 25 July 2019
  • Royal Assent 26 February 2020
  • Completed 26 February 2020


This item is included in the Intellectual Property Laws Amendment (Productivity Commission Response Part 2 and Other Measures) Act 2020 which commences on 27 February 2020.

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