HC Deb 05 February 1941 vol 368 cc917-8
11. Mr. Loftus

asked the Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of Aircraft Production whether, with a view to avoiding delays in production, the Ministry will take over forthwith all patent rights connected with, and now being used in connection with, aircraft production, reserving the question of compensation for future settlement?

Colonel Llewellin

Under Section 29 of the Patents and Designs Act, 1907, the Department already exercises the power to use patented inventions and to reserve the question of compensation for future settlement.

Mr. Loftus

Can my hon. and gallant Friend say whether all these British rights are available to the American manufacturers who are manufacturing aeroplanes for the R.A.F.?

Colonel Llewellin

We have an arrangement whereby, through the United States Administration, we share patents without any argument in advance as to what patent fees shall be paid, and that applies both to American patents that they let us use and to British patents which we allow to be used in the United States.

Mr. Woodburn

Has the attention of the Minister been called to the statement that certain firms keep secret very important inventions with regard to aircraft which might have a great effect on improving the production of other firms, and are all these inventions made available to all firms producing aircraft in this country at the present moment?

Colonel Llewellin

Yes, Sir, I think that that is quite true. I think there is none of these inventions of which the Department does not know, and, of course, the Department make them available to all people manufacturing aircraft.