A patent protects an invention that is a ‘method of new manufacture’. It gives exclusive use of an invention for up to 20 years and can become a valuable business asset that can be bought, sold, transferred or licensed.
The Patents Bill was introduced to Parliament in July 2008 and given its first reading in May 2009.
In August 2000 the government agreed to a three-stage review of the Patents Act 1953 to take account of the social and technological changes since it was passed.
Draft guidelines for the Intellectual Property Office of New Zealand (IPONZ) when examining patent applications for inventions involving embedded computer programs.
As part of the review of the Patents Act, the government considered whether or not an experimental use exception should be incorporated into New Zealand's patent law.