The Patents Act 1977 (as amended)

Section 50A: Powers exercisable following merger and market investigations

Licences of right and compulsory licences

50A. (1) Subsection (2) below applies where;

  • (a) section 41(2), 55(2), 66(6), 75(2), 83(2), 138(2), 147(2), 147A(2) or 160(2) of, or paragraph 5(2) or 10(2) of Schedule 7 to, the Enterprise Act 2002 (powers to take remedial action following merger or market investigations) applies 1 ;

  • (b) the Competition and Markets Authority or (as the case may be) the Secretary of State considers that it would be appropriate to make an application under this section for the purpose of remedying, mitigating or preventing a matter which cannot be dealt with under the enactment concerned; and

  • (c) the matter concerned involves;

(i) conditions in licences granted under a patent by its proprietor restricting the use of the invention by the licensee or the right of the proprietor to grant other licences; or

(ii) a refusal by the proprietor of a patent to grant licences on reasonable terms.

(2) The Competition and Markets Authority or (as the case may be) the Secretary of State may apply to the comptroller to take action under this section.

(3) Before making an application the Competition within 30 days of such publication by persons whose interests appear to it or him to be affected.

(4) The comptroller may, if it appears to him on an application under this section that the application is made in accordance with this section, by order cancel or modify any condition concerned of the kind mentioned in subsection (1)(c)(i) above or may, instead or in addition, make an entry in the register to the effect that licences under the patent are to be available as of right.

(5) References in this section to the Competition and Markets Authority are references to a CMA group except where;

  • (a) section 75(2) of the Enterprise Act 2002 applies; or

  • (b) any other enactment mentioned in subsection (1)(a) above applies and the functions of the Competition and Markets Authority under that enactment are being performed by the CMA Board by virtue of section 34C(3) or 133A(2) of the Enterprise Act 2002.

(6) References in section 35, 36, 47, 63, 134 or 141 or 141A of the Enterprise Act 2002 (questions to be decided by the Competition and Markets Authority in its reports) to taking action under section 41(2), 55, 66, 138 or 147 or 147A shall include references to taking action under subsection (2) above 2.

(7) Action taken by virtue of subsection (4) above in consequence of an application under subsection (2) above where an enactment mentioned in subsection (1)(a) above applies shall be treated, for the purposes of sections 91(3), 92(1)(a), 162(1) and 166(3) of the Enterprise Act 2002 (duties to register and keep under review enforcement orders etc.), as if it were the making of an enforcement order (within the meaning of the Part concerned) under the relevant power in Part 3 or (as the case may be) 4 of that Act 3

(8) In subsection (5) “CMA Board” and “CMA group” have the same meaning as in Schedule 4 to the Enterprise and Regulatory Reform Act 2013.

Footnotes

  1. This paragraph has effect as if it included references to article 12(7) of, and paragraph 5(2) and 10(2) of Schedule 2 to, the Enterprise Act 2002 (Protection of Legitimate Interests) Order 2003 (SI 2003/1592). 

  2. The references in this subsection to sections 63 and 66 of the Enterprise Act 2002 have effect as if they included (respectively) references to articles 6 and 12 of the Enterprise Act 2002 (Protection of Legitimate Interests) Order 2003 (SI 2003/1592). 

  3. The reference in this subsection to Part 3 of the Enterprise Act 2002 has effect as if it included a reference to the Enterprise Act 2002 (Protection of Legitimate Interests) Order 2003 (SI 2003/1592).