28 August 2017
Support from the Australian Government to raise the quality of pharmaceutical patents, as outlined in its response to the Productivity Commission inquiry into intellectual property arrangements, is welcomed by the Generic and Biosimilar Medicines Association (GBMA).
GBMA specifically welcomes the Government’s decision to further define the inventive step which will improve patent quality and align with international best practice, as well as a decision to abolish the failed innovation patent system.
“GBMA remains highly supportive of genuine innovation and the use of patents to encourage the discovery of new medical treatments. Intellectual property protection should be firmly focussed at the cutting edge of innovation and not merely used as a commercial strategy to deny market entry for competitors,” GBMA CEO, Belinda Wood said.
“GBMA has long advocated for action to redress the imbalance in Australia’s pharmaceutical patent system, and this is not the first inquiry to recommend significant reform to pharmaceutical intellectual property in Australia,”
“That many of the recommendations made by the Productivity Commission reflect similar reform proposals from other inquiries including the 2012 Raising the Bar Initiative, the 2013 Pharmaceutical Patents Review, and the 2015 ACIP Innovation Patent System Review, tells us there are clearly issues that need to be addressed,”
“However, it is also clear the Government recognises the complexity of implementing significant intellectual property reform, particularly as it relates to extension of patent terms and international trade agreements,”
“GBMA therefore stands ready to work with the Government and the broader medicines sector through the next consultation phase. We look forward to discussing ways to improve the patent system and navigate a sensible way forward that balances access to new innovations whilst ensuring affordable medicines for all Australians.” said Ms Wood.
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