Australia's intellectual property system will be strengthened with new laws passing through Parliament today.
"Changes to Australia's intellectual property laws are crucial to Australia's productivity challenge and maintaining employment in high skilled and high paying jobs," said Mark Dreyfus, Parliamentary Secretary for Industry and Innovation.
The Intellectual Property Laws Amendment (Raising the Bar) Bill 2012 provides a timely overhaul of Australia's IP system and builds on the successful R&D Tax Incentive introduced last year to support the transition to a knowledge economy.
"Researchers will benefit from the certainty that they can explore new ideas free from the threat of patent infringement," said Mr Dreyfus.
Other key elements of Raising the Bar include:
- improved standards for Australian patents to give local inventors greater confidence they can get the protection they need in major export markets,
- increased penalties for trade mark infringement and improvements to border security measures to keep out counterfeit goods, and
- less red tape and administrative delays to ensure innovators and business get the protection they need faster.
"Intellectual property is one of the cornerstones of a successful and flourishing innovation environment, which is why our IP system must be robust," Mr Dreyfus said.
"The 'research exemption' gives clarity and certainty to our researchers so they can focus on producing groundbreaking research."
"The reforms also demonstrate the Government's commitment to cut red tape and avoid delays in processing patent applications."
"There are thousands of Australian business owners who will also benefit from the tough, new anti-counterfeiting trade mark measures." said Mr Dreyfus.
Mr Dreyfus said the Bill supported Australian researchers and business in a growing knowledge economy and marked a new era for Australia's IP system.
For more information about the Intellectual Property Laws Amendment (Raising the Bar) Bill 2012, visit www.ipaustralia.gov.au.
Media Contact: Parliamentary Secretary's office, 02 6277 4305