Written Answers. - Intellectual Property Initiatives.

Thursday, 20 June 1991

Dáil Éireann Debate
Vol. 410 No. 1

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  45.  Mr. J. Bruton  Information on John Bruton  Zoom on John Bruton   asked the Minister for Industry and Commerce  Information on Desmond J. O'Malley  Zoom on Desmond J. O'Malley   if he will outline the progress which has been made in relation to the implementation of the Single European Act in the field of intellectual property pursuant to the call by the EC Summit at Dublin in June 1990 for rapid completion of work thereon.

Minister for Industry and Commerce (Mr. O'Malley): Information on Desmond J. O'Malley  Zoom on Desmond J. O'Malley  I set out hereunder, a report giving the information requested by the Deputy.

Progress Report (at mid-June 1991) on intellectual property initiatives within the Community.

Patent Field

(i) Proposal for a Council Directive on the legal protection of biotechnological inventions.

Position: Under examination by Council Working Party. Awaiting opinion of the European Parliament.

(ii) Proposal for a Council Regulation [130] concerning the creation of a supplementary protection certificate for medicinal products.

Position: Under discussions at Council Working Party.

(iii) Agreement relating to Community Patents (which amends and replaces the Community Patent Convention of 1975).

Position: Entry into force is dependent upon ratification by all member states. The position is to be reviewed at the end of this year. Ireland has a constitutional problem which prevents us from ratifying.

Trade Mark Field

(i) Proposal for a Council Regulation establishing a Community trade mark system (and three related implementing Regulations).

Position: Technical aspects of Regulation almost settled.

(ii) Council Directive to approximate the laws of the member states relating to trade marks. (89/104/EEC).

Position: Adopted 21 December 1988. Will be implemented as part of a complete overhaul and updating of Irish trade mark law.

Copyright Field

(i) Council Directive on the legal protection of computer programmes. (91/250/EEC).

Position: Adopted 14 May 1991. Legislation to give effect to the directive in Ireland is currently under consideration.

(ii) Proposal for a decision that the member states will, by 31 December 1992, ratify or adhere to and comply with the 1971 Paris Act of the Berne Convention and with the Rome Convention of 26 October 1961.

Position: Under examination by Council Working Party.

(iii) Proposal for a directive on rental right, lending and certain neighbouring rights.

Position: Under examination by Council Working Party.

The following measures are contemplated by the Commission but are [131] not yet the subject of proposals to the Council.

(iv) A directive on home copying of sound and audiovisual recordings.

(v) A directive on the harmonisation of the legal protection of databases.

(vi) A directive on the harmonisation of the term of protection for copyright and certain neighbouring rights.

(vii) A directive on the co-ordination of certain rules concerning copyright and neighbouring rights applicable to satellite and cable broadcasting.

(viii) Subjects on which studies are planned by 31 December 1992 at the latest:

(a) Moral rights,

(b) Reprography,

(c) Resale right,

(d) Collective management of copyright and neighbouring rights and collecting societies.

Topographies of Semi-Conductor Products

(i) Council Directive on the legal protection of topographies of semiconductor products (87/54/EEC).

Position: Adopted 16 December 1986 and given effect in Ireland from 13 May 1988 by S.I. 101 of 1988.

(ii) Council Decision on the extension of legal protection of topographies of semiconductor products in respect of persons from certain countries and territories. (88/311/EEC).

Position: Adopted 31 May 1988 and given effect in Ireland from 18 August 1988 by S.I. 208 of 1988.

(iii) Two Council decisions on the extension of legal protection of topographies of semiconductor products in respect of persons from certain countries and territories. (90/510 EC and 90/511 EC).

Position: Adopted 9 October 1990. Regulations to give effect to these in Ireland are drafted and will be signed [132] following clarification by the Office of the Attorney General of certain legal issues.


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