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Danish Parliament obliges Minister to renegotiate software patents in Council

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Copenhagen, 4 March 2005 -- The Danish Minister of Economic and Industry Affairs Bendt Bendtsen has been obliged by the Danish Parliament EU Committee to reopen the software patents discussion in the EU Council of Ministers. Therefore, the directive cannot be adopted as an A-item (formal point) at the Competition Council meeting on Monday.

Minister Bendtsen (Conservatives) did not want to reopen discussions, but the minority government he is part of was overruled by a coalition consisting of a.o. Social Democrates and the Social Liberal Party in the Parliament's EU Affairs Committee. Lone Dybkjær from Det Radikale Venstre (Social Liberal Party) says the minister is obliged to follow this decision to ask to take the A-item off the agenda.

Moreover, the minister should also ask to put it as a B-item at a subsequent Council meeting. This means that the directive will again appear on the Council table as a discussion point, and not just something which should be formally adopted. This would immediately fulfill the main concern which moved the European Parliament to request a restart of the directive to the Commission: lack of a proper first reading in the Council.

Lone Dybkjær said "We hope Denmark will be supported by Sweden in this matter", referring to the earlier request to reopen discussions by the Swedish liberals request. Bendtsen is certain to find support from his Polish colleague Kleiber, who said earlier today in the Gazeta Wyborcza

Arda Gerkens, a Dutch MP of the Socialistische Partij who supported the Dutch motion from yesterday and who earlier on introduced several related motions in the Dutch parliament, added:

Hartmut Pilch comments:

Comments made by Danish Socialist MP Anne Grete Holmsgaard to Computerworld Online:

English translation:

Danish original:

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