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Thursday, 12 August 2004
Page: 26394

Senator HILL (Minister for Defence) (7:45 PM) —This is moving away from the provisions that are included within the implementation bill and referring back to the effectiveness of Australia's existing patent law, which is another debate we have had, and in effect expressing a concern that the experiences that have occurred in the United States under their law might translate to Australia. The best advice that we have is that that is simply not going to occur, largely because of the differences in law that does not facilitate it in this country and in the administration of the Patents Act.

In the circumstances that Senator Allison outlined, a new patent would simply not be given. Furthermore, under our legal system you do not have the same opportunity to hold up a generic whilst you debate it within the patent registration system. As I said, even the Labor Party after a week of agony have come to the conclusion that the Australian patent system is sound and that the sorts of abuses that Senator Allison outlined have not occurred historically within this country and are not going to occur under existing law.