Re: [LINK] Intellectual property rights and the Australia—US Free Trade Agreement
rchirgwin at ozemail.com.au
rchirgwin at ozemail.com.au
Sun Jun 13 17:43:59 EST 2004
Thanks for that ... it confirms what I had only held as a suspicion.
There's a line that says that a patent owner can prohibit the
unauthorised importation of anything over which a patent is held >>or is
produced by a patented process<<. It had some discussion on Unlink ...
since just about anything can be called "produced by a patented process"
I had concluded the same thing. Nice to see it in the public domain with
The ACCC had, of course, attracted much unfavourable attention from the
pigopolists for its long attempts to make parallel importing legal. So
they just went over the ACCC's head.
Rick Welykochy wrote:
> Here are a couple a quotes in a research paper on the AUSFTA
> and the impact of IPR, available at
> in HTML or PDF.
> Executive summary
> The purpose of this paper is to examine the provisions on
> intellectual property rights (IPRs) in the Australia United
> States Free Trade Agreement (AUSFTA). IPRs are a temporary
> means of giving the creator of a ‘work’ the exclusive right
> to benefit from that ‘work’. A ‘work’ here refers to
> expressions and inventions. The justification for IPRs is
> that rewards to the creator and protection from competition
> are necessary to encourage innovation and creativity.
> Anti-competitive conduct is tolerated for that reason.
> IPRs fit awkwardly in an agreement that has the aim of
> advancing free trade. Free trade aims to eliminate or reduce
> government interference in trade across international borders.
> By contrast, stronger IPRs interfere in the market for the
> benefit of rights holders. Generally the AUSFTA aims to strengthen
> the protection given to holders of IPRs.
> ... This paper has examined some issues arising out of the
> inclusion of IPRs in the AUSFTA. For example, new measures
> recently introduced into the IPRs debates, such as the technological
> protection of ‘rights management information’ have had the effect of
> introducing parallel importation restrictions through the back door.
> Developments in Australia and elsewhere have made it clear that
> technological protection measures seem to have more to do with
> discriminatory pricing than genuine anti-piracy measures. The AUSFTA
> further reinforces anti-competitive practice in those respects. Other
> specific measures included in chapter 17 are also problematic insofar
> as they enshrine and enhance anti-competitive behaviour on the part
> of IPR holders in Australia.
> In a sense all this is well-known. IPRs have always been acknowledged
> as at least a temporary protection from competition. There is seen
> to be a trade-off between the anticompetitive aspects of IPRs on the
> one hand and the desirability of encouraging innovation on the other.
> There is no simple answer to balancing those competing objectives.
> However, the issue is that Australia, and the rest of the world, will
> be pushed too far in the direction of IPRs that promote monopoly power.
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