Information for Review of Art. 27.3(b) (Patentable Subject Matter) - View

South Africa

List of Questions

Illustrative List of Questions Prepared by the Secretariat.

N.B. Please ensure that your responses to the questions above cover each category of subject matter specified in Article 27.3(b), namely micro-organisms, essentially biological processes for the production of plants or animals, microbiological processes, non-biological processes, plant varieties and other inventions concerning plants or animals.

Plant varieties can only be protected under plant breeders’ rights. However, where a plant variety is the product of a micro-biological process, such a process may be protected by patent law. The Act and all information supplied makes it very clear that a plant variety (in other words, the plant itself) can only be protected under plant breeders' rights, and not under a patent.
Representative Questions for TRIPS 27.3(b) Review Submitted by the Delegations of Canada, the European Union (formerly European Communities), Japan and the United States