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Thursday, 8 December 1960

Sir GARFIELD BARWICK (Parramatta) (Attorney-General) . - in reply - I want to mention only two matters. The Deputy Leader of the Opposition (Mr. Whitlam) has no reason to suppose that I have overlooked the question of trying not only to make the appellate provisions in industrial property law uniform but perhaps to change their venue. He knows very well that that has been in my mind for some time, but this is not the appropriate bill in which to give effect to such a change if it should be desired.

I know the constituents of the honorable member for Barton (Mr. Reynolds) who have put this matter before him. I have had correspondence with them; indeed, I gave them access to one of my offices on one occasion for a discussion which proved very helpful to me. I did see the germ of an idea in what they put to me, but it was not quite what the honorable member has stated. I have told his constituents that I shall meet them again to see whether I can do something to assist them.

I do not propose to set up a special legal aid agency for inventors, as I think the honorable member would like to counsel, nor do I propose to do anything that is comparable to what is done in the Soviet Union where, according to the honorable member, people have no problem in selling inventions. That is probably quite right. There are many differences between this country and the Soviet Union. In this respect, I do not propose to advance Australia one whit towards the state of affairs that exists in the Soviet Union. However, I shall meet the honorable member's constituents from time to time to see whether I can render them some assistance in solving the problem that I know confronts some of them.

Question resolved in the affirmative.

Bill read a second time.

In committee:

Clauses 1 to 6 - by leave - taken together, and agreed to.

Clause 7.

Sections forty-two and forty-three of the Principal Act are repealed and the following section is inserted in their stead: - " 42. Where-

(a)   an application was accompanied by a specification purporting to be a complete specification; and

(b)   the applicant, within twelve months after the date of the application, and before the application and the complete specification have been accepted, requests the Commissioner to treat the specification as a provisional specification, the Commissioner may direct that the specification be treated as a provisional specification and, in that case, the specification shall, for the purposes of this Act, be deemed to be, and at all times to have been, a provisional specification.".

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