The Australian Government has announced its intention to amend Australia's existing intellectual property laws to, among other things, “improve mechanisms for trade mark and copyright enforcement in Australia”. The exposure draft of the Intellectual Property Laws Amendment (Raising the Bar) Bill 2011 (PDF) and an accompanying draft explanatory memorandum (PDF) outlining the reforms to Australia’s intellectual property system was released for public comment on 3 March 2011.

The draft Bill includes proposed amendments to the current system for confiscating imported goods that infringe registered trade marks and copyright material notified to Customs, harsher penalties for trade mark offences, and provision for the Court to award additional damages for trade mark infringement.

IP Australia has invited interested stakeholders to make written submissions on the draft Bill and explanatory memorandum by 4 April 2011.