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Parliament rejects proposed Directive on legal protection of biotechnological inventions

On 1 March the European Parliament rejected the adoption of a proposed Directive on the legal protection of biotechnological inventions. The proposal had aimed to introduce an equal level of patent protection for biotechnological inventions in all Member States and a solid leg...
On 1 March the European Parliament rejected the adoption of a proposed Directive on the legal protection of biotechnological inventions. The proposal had aimed to introduce an equal level of patent protection for biotechnological inventions in all Member States and a solid legal framework for their commercial development and research.

The results of the vote - 240 to 188, and 23 abstentions - brings to an end the adoption procedure for the Directive, which had begun on a proposal from the Commission six years earlier. It had already been agreed by a committee of representatives from the Parliament and the Council under the co-decision procedure.

The debate revolved around the most sensitive issue in the Directive, namely the altering of genes in foetuses in order to eradicate inherited diseases.

Mr. Monti, Commissioner responsible for internal market, said that without uniform legislation in this field, European research and the use of its results for therapeutic purposes would be placed at a disadvantage vis-a-vis competition from third countries. In addition, he noted that without a Directive, there would be no legal guarantee concerning the ethical aspects surrounding protection of the human body.
DE

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