Intellectual property

This page outlines how, in 2001, the Government responded to the Royal Commission on Genetic Modification's recommendations about intellectual property.

10.1 Amend the Plant Variety Rights Act 1987 to introduce the concept of essential derivation

Agreed in principle the Plant Variety Rights Act 1987 be amended to introduce the concept of essential derivation subject to the outcome of decisions on a review of the Plant Variety Rights Act 1987, to be undertaken in tandem with Stage 3 of the current review of the Patents Act 1953.

10.2 Amend the Patents Act 1953 to add a specific exclusion of patentability of human beings and the biological processes for their generation

Agreed the Patents Act 1953 be amended by adding a specific exclusion to patentability of human beings and the biological processes for their generation.

Agreed that the non-patentability of individual genes be considered further in the course of the review of the Patents Act 1953.

10.3 To establish a Māori Consultative Committee for the Intellectual Property Office

Agreed a Māori consultative committee be established, but that its scope and role be confirmed following public consultation as part of Stage 3 of the review of the Patents Act 1953.

10.4 New Zealand be proactive in pursuing cultural and intellectual property rights for indigenous peoples internationally

Agreed New Zealand be proactive in pursuing cultural and intellectual rights for indigenous peoples internationally.

Directed officials to implement recommendation 10.4 of the Commission as a guiding principle for participation in relevant international fora.

10.5 To review WTO conventions to include a reference to the avoidance of cultural offence as a specific ground for exclusion or reservation

Directed officials from the Ministry of Economic Development, Te Puni Kokiri and Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade to:

  1. support the concept of “exclusion or reservation on the basis of cultural offence” through work currently being progressed through the World Intellectual Property Organisation, and the development of a new system for the protection of Māori “cultural and intellectual property”
  2. be alert for opportunities which may arise in the World Trade Organisation TRIPS context.

10.6 To resolve the Wai 262 and Wai 740 claims as soon as possible

Agreed with the Commission’s recommendation 10.6 that all parties concerned work to resolve the Wai 262 and Wai 740 claims currently before the Waitangi Tribunal as soon as possible.

10.7 HSNO and ACVM be amended to give appropriate protection to all commercially sensitive or confidential supporting information provided with applications for approval

Directed officials from the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry and Ministry for Environment to undertake consultation with key stakeholders to determine what level of protection is appropriate for commercially sensitive or confidential supporting information provided with applications for approval, with a view to amending the Hazardous Substances and New Organisms Act 1996 and the Agricultural Compounds and Veterinary Medicines Act 1997.

Reviewed:
17/05/13