The Productivity Commission released its draft report on Australia’s intellectual property system on 29 April 2016.
The Commission has been asked to consider whether current arrangements appropriately balance access to ideas and products, and encouragement of innovation, investment and creative works.
Key recommendations include:
- changes to the patent system to improve patent quality, including abolishing innovation patents, limiting business method and software patents, increasing the requirements for invention and revisiting patent fees.
- changes to the copyright system to introduce a broad fair use exception and encouraging more accessible content rather than increasing enforcement.
- reviewing dispute resolution options for SMEs.
- making commercial transactions involving IP rights subject to competition law, including repealing the current exemption under the Competition & Consumer Act.
- reviewing IP rights from the perspective of trade agreements to ensure that Australia, as a net importer of IP, encourages balanced treatment for patents and copyright.
Submissions are due by Friday 3 June.