Patent Joint Application and Examination Processes between IP Australia and the Intellectual Property Office of New Zealand not to proceed

In 2011 the Australian and New Zealand Prime Ministers announced what was intended to be a new level of cooperation between IP Australia and the Intellectual Property Office of New Zealand. The proposed cooperation included a single application process for both Australia and New Zealand, and a single examination process whereby a single examiner from either IP Australia or the Intellectual Property Office of New Zealand would examine an application.

On 13 July 2016, the Commerce Select Committee of New Zealand parliament reported on the Patents (Trans-Tasman Patent Attorneys and Other Matters) Amendment Bill. This legislation included the measures necessary to introduce both a single application process and a single application process. The overwhelming response of the committee, which included members of both major parties, was to recommend against the necessary provisions.

The full text of the Select Committee report can be found here.

The Government is not bound to proceed with the Select Committee recommendations. However, given the bipartisan nature of the committee, we consider it highly unlikely the New Zealand Government will proceed with the necessary amendments. Without New Zealand legislative change neither process can proceed in either Australia or New Zealand.

Please let us know if you have any questions.

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