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Launch of IP Toolbox and IP Access, 26 April 2002.

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The Hon Warren Entsch MP Parliamentary Secretary Speech - 26 April 2002

Launch of IP Toolbox and IP Access

Welcome to the launch of IP Toolbox and IP Access, on this, World Intellectual Property Day 2002.

IP Toolbox provides the first and, as far as we are aware, only ‘one-stop-shop’ for people wanting to know what intellectual property is and how to use it.

IP Access is Australia’s premier on-line IP resource. The release of these two key products demonstrates the Government’s ongoing commitment to encouraging and fostering Australian innovation.

In February 2000 the Government and the Business Council of Australia convened a National Innovation Summit, involving the business, education and scientific communities in discussions about how innovation occurs in Australia and how we can encourage and foster more innovation.

The outcomes of this summit formed the basis of the Government’s innovation statement Backing Australia's Ability, a five-year strategy designed to harness the collective talent, energy and resources of all those dedicated to securing Australia's economic future.

It represents a commitment to pursue excellence in research, science and technology, to build an even more highly skilled workforce, and increase opportunities for taking new ideas to market.

The strategy also identified some potential products and services to help business take better advantage of their innovations - which is why we are here at this launch today.

The Government believes that a strong and effective IP system promotes research and development through helping to protect and, in turn, capture better returns from commercialising Australian ideas and products.

It also helps create spin-off opportunities for Australian business, especially from developments in public sector research institutions and universities. This means that profits will be returned to innovative Australian businesses and that new jobs will be created.

Behind every good product or service is an idea - that is intellectual property.

Understanding how to identify, manage, protect and exploit that IP is central to the success of any business.

Identification means that a business understands the assets that drive its success.

Management and protection mean that a business monitors the market to ensure no one tries to trade on their reputation. It also means they know what action to take if they find that someone has infringed them.

While commercialisation means that a business is aware of all the ways that they can make money from their IP - which doesn't necessarily mean that they need to manufacture and/or sell the product or service themselves.

The IP Toolbox and IP Access products are designed to help innovative Australian businesses, business advisers, academia and innovators have better access to IP information and tools to help them to capture the real potential of their innovations and secure profits for Australia.

These two new products provide valuable information in a simple, user-friendly format about all IP-based issues that should be considered when starting up, maintaining, or growing a business.

By arming our business, industry and research communities with the information they need to better appreciate and value their intellectual property, we’re fostering a stronger IP system and helping local innovators to effectively manage and commercialise their ideas.

IP Toolbox is the first product of its kind in Australia, and possibly the world, containing 22 modules of critical information on different types of IP, management and commercialisation options.

It is a comprehensive self-help guide to the identification, management, protection and commercialisation of IP. For the first time, this information is available in one place in an easy to use workbook and CD ROM.

Developed for use by professionals such as business advisers, accountants and lawyers - professionals that research reveals provide business advice to Australian small to medium sized business - IP Toolbox is a valuable resource which will help provide Australian industry with the skills and knowledge to manage and exploit their intellectual assets effectively.

IP Access is a unique Internet IP portal, designed using state of the art Australian technology, which provides business, academia and innovators with easier access to information on all areas of IP.

IP Access will also help the Government to coordinate IP inquiries falling under different Government portfolio responsibilities more effectively.

IP Access currently provides easy access to all IP information that is produced by Government and is another example of the Government’s commitment to providing its services and information on-line.

Further content will be available via IP Access throughout 2002 as non-government information is added to this growing IP information resource. IP Access will indeed become Australia's premier intellectual property resource.

The Government is firmly committed to the continued development of the IP system to provide business with the confidence to innovate, invest in research and development and develop competitive Australian products and services.

Initiatives such as IP Toolbox and IP Access will be extremely useful in instilling this confidence by providing sound and accessible information about IP protection and management.

Today, on World Intellectual Property Day, the theme of which is ‘Encourage Creativity’, it is my pleasure to formally announce the launch of these new, innovative and practical Australian tools.

I believe IP Toolbox and IP Access will help encourage Australian creativity and innovation and help to ensure that the benefits of new ideas will be returned to Australia.