Intellectual Property in the Mining Industry

Australian Institute of Geoscientists > Best Practice > Intellectual Property in the Mining Industry

An article by Robynne Sanders in the May 2014 issue of “Explore”, global law firm DLA Piper’s mining industry newsletter, provides an interesting discussion of  measures being taken by companies to protect their intellectual property.  

For the past decade the mining boom has enabled those companies lucky enough to work in the industry to grow and prosper. With the resources sector tightening the focus has shifted to protecting that growth to ensure the continued profitability of mining companies and suppliers alike.

One mechanism by which companies are looking to protect their position is intellectual property rights, most notably patents and confidential information (know how).  Both are effective tools to ensure exclusive rights to technology and processes. For the owner, they enjoy market advantage as the sole provider of certain products or services or improved profitability as the result of their exclusive use of the best processes. This is clearly a huge advantage.

For these reasons many resources companies and suppliers consider intellectual property the new frontier of the mining sector. While it works for the owner, for those around them intellectual property can be, at best, a significant inconvenience, and at worst a serious threat to their business.

To find out more, download the May 2014 edition of Explore here.