IP Australia has published a report on the results of its consultations on the economic consequences of Australia joining The Hague Agreement for the international registration of industrial designs.
In short, there’s a bit of minor tweaking, but the outcome is pretty much the same. The revised best estimate:
- net benefit to Australian designers is $3 million (up from $1.7 million)
- net cost to Australian consumers is $39.7 million (down from $58 million)
- net cost to Australian IP professionals is $2.5 million (unchanged)
- net cost to the Australian Government is $2.8 million (unchanged).
Perhaps one of the most interesting aspects of the report is an analysis of all infringement court cases involving patents, trade marks or registered designs since 2008:
Rate of infringement cases by registered IPR
There have been far less design infringement cases but, having regard to the number of registered designs, litigation is in approximately the same proportion as trade mark infringement cases, but approximately only one third the rate of patent litigation.
Another surprising aspect: the New Zealand Intellectual Property Association also made submissions – which appear to have been rather influential – which strongly opposed Australia joining the Hague system.
Finally, the report is at pains to say that the costs benefit analysis of joining Hague is only one factor being considered. Anyone want to put money on Australia joining (before we sign up to anothere one-way trade agreement with, this time, the EU)?