JuriProtekt0505En

Recital 20

number

submitter

recommendation

text

20

Rocard

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The competitive position of Community industry in relation to its major trading partners will be improved if the current differences in the legal protection of computer-controlled inventions are eliminated and the legal situation is transparent. The present trend for traditional manufacturing industry to shift their operations to low-cost economies outside the Community, as well as the requirements for sustainable and balanced development, are factors to be taken into account when determining an appropriate level of intellectual property protection and in particular patent protection for technical inventions and copyright protection for software. The level of this protection, as well as the monopolistic effects it might create should be determined in a manner that will not prejudice the dynamics of competition and cross-fertilisation which are the key to the development of innovative small and medium-sized enterprises in the European Union with easy market access, which will serve to ensure the Community's future competitiveness.

247

Lichtenberger, Frassoni

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The competitive position of Community industry in relation to its major trading partners will be improved if the current differences in the legal protection of computer-assisted inventions are eliminated and the legal situation is transparent. The present trend for traditional manufacturing industry to shift their operations to low-cost economies outside the Community, as well as the requirements for sustainable and balanced development, are factors to be taken into consideration when choosing an appropriate level of intellectual property protection and in particular patent protection for technical inventions and copyright protection for software. The level of this protection, as well as the monopolistic effects it might create, should be determined in a manner that competition and cross-fertilisation which are the key to the development of innovative small and medium-sized enterprises in the European Union with easy market access; such enterprises will be the guarantors of the future competitiveness of the Community.

248

Lehne

+

The competitive position of Community industry in relation to its major trading partners will be improved if the current differences in the legal protection of computer-implemented inventions are eliminated and the legal situation is transparent.

248 correctly deletes the Commission and Council's strange logic that introducing software patents will help against or compensate for outsourcing manufacturing. In fact, software patents make it more easy to outsource software R&D as well, since this allows such companies to gain European exclusion rights on their foreign software R&D (so it becomes harder for the left-behind European workforce to compete with them). Multinationals such as Philips are already outsourcing software R&D to China today, simply because China has a very highly trained and cheap workforce (and at the same time they want "protection" in Europe from the same Chinese companies who make use of that same workforce to develop products).

20 (= 247, except for "computer-controlled" instead of "computer-assisted") adds additional nuances to the recital, noting that clarification of the law in itself is no guarantee for improved competitiveness (e.g., making it clear that software must be patentable would not be better than being in doubt over whether or not that is the case).

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