HL Deb 11 November 1997 vol 583 cc90-1

3.20 p.m.

Read a third time.

Lord Carter

My Lords, I beg to move that the Bill do now pass.

Moved, That the Bill do now pass.—(Lord Carter.)

Baroness Anelay of St. Johns

My Lords,I should like to take this opportunity to thank the noble Lord, Lord Carter, for his courtesy during the passing of the Bill and, in particular, for the work which he did between Second Reading and the Committee stage in hearing representations from my noble friends and also from organisations outwith this House. As a result of that process, I believe that amendments have been made to the Bill which mean that it has been greatly improved. I should also like to thank my noble friend Lord Lucas for his work on Second Reading; and, indeed, my noble friends sitting behind me for their assistance. I have in mind my noble friends Lady Trumpington, Lord Skelmersdale and Lord Howe.

I should like to thank those organisations which have submitted evidence throughout the proceedings on the Bill—for example, the NFU and BARB—all of which have been most helpful during the course of our discussions. We have consistently supported the objective of the Bill; namely, to implement the 1991 revisions to the UPOV convention. We welcome its passage through the House.

Lord Beaumont of Whitley

My Lords, I made no secret of the fact on Second Reading that I thought that the Bill was actually a part of a whole series of moves towards privatisation of intellectual property and the increasing patenting of things of a nature which should not be patented, but that it was really rather too late to do anything very much about it. However, as we have this rather unfortunate Bill and such an unfortunate situation, I should like to pay tribute to the way the Government have dealt with it; the way they have amended it; and the way they have speedily passed it through this House. It means that we shall not have to spend too much more time on the matter.

Lord Carter

My Lords, I am extremely grateful to the noble Baroness, Lady Anelay, and the noble Lord, Lord Beaumont, for their kind words. I believe that the noble Baroness has already thanked all those that I intended to thank, so she has saved me that task. We are pleased with the Bill's progress. It is a highly technical Bill and I should like especially to thank the noble Baroness for her most helpful and constructive assistance. I speak from my own experience when I say that this is not the easiest piece of legislation to read and understand. The noble Baroness came into the proceedings, which were new to her, in Committee. I am extremely grateful to her for the valuable contribution she has made.

On Question, Bill passed, and returned to the Commons with amendments.