IP in the Trans Pacific Partnership – an update

In Japan in late January 2018, Ministers from the 11 remaining member countries agreed on the final version of the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP, or TPP-11). It is expected that the Agreement will be signed in Chile in early March.

Once signed, the agreement will be tabled in parliament and The Joint Standing Committee on Treaties (JSCOT) will conduct an inquiry and provide a report to the Parliament, in all likelihood, recommending passage of implementing legislation. The Opposition is pushing for independent economic modelling to understand the implications on Australia’s economy. The Government has dismissed the need for modelling, asserting that the deal is good for exports and Australian jobs and delivers big wins to farmers, manufacturers and service providers.

Last year we wrote about the suspended IP provisions from the original TPP. While the text of the CPTPP will not be released until the French and Spanish translations have been finalised, reports confirm that the suspended IP provisions have been scrapped. Australia would have been largely unaffected by these changes. In any event the Government is determined to make sweeping changes to our local IP system to implement changes recommended by the Productivity Commission from their inquiry into Intellectual Property Arrangements.