Software Patent Directive

Trade and Industry written question – answered on 4th February 2005.

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Photo of Steve Webb Steve Webb Shadow Secretary of State for Work and Pensions

To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what the status is of the EU software patent directive; if she will make it her policy to oppose the directive as it stands; and if she will make a statement.

Photo of Patricia Hewitt Patricia Hewitt Secretary of State, Department of Trade and Industry

holding answer 31 January 2005

The Government support measures to ensure common criteria for patents in this area across the EU and believes it is important to confirm the current position of permitting the patenting of certain types of software-related inventions important to many high tech industries, while preventing a drift towards widening the scope of patentability. We believe the current text achieves this.

The text of the draft Directive is due to be formally adopted by the Council as a "common position". Once it has been adopted it will return to the European Parliament for Second Reading.

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