11 – Business Law Newsletter
In this edition:
- Christchurch: from Recovery to Regeneration
- Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement Amendment Bill
- Budget 2016 key points
- Business Law Team
Christchurch: from Recovery to Regeneration
The future of Christchurch’s regeneration has shifted hands. The Greater Christchurch Regeneration Act 2016 (Act) came into force on 19 April 2016. The Act marks an important milestone in Christchurch’s post earthquake journey in the shift from recovery to regeneration. Not only does it highlight the progress of Christchurch’s efforts over the last five years but opens the doors to a future of exciting opportunities for the residents, businesspeople and visitors to the Garden City. The commencement date of the Act, coincided with the expiry of the Christchurch Earthquake Recovery Act 2011 (CER Act) on 18 April 2016. The CER Act has been repealed and gone are the days of the Christchurch Earthquake Recovery Authority.
Five years on from the Canterbury earthquakes, the Act marks the shift from the recovery phase to the regeneration phase of greater Christchurch. Taking over the reigns of Christchurch’s regenerative future are three newly established entities: Regenerate Christchurch (joint council-Crown agency, established by the Act), Ōtākaro Limited (Crown owned and funded) and Development Christchurch Limited (Christchurch City Council (CCC) owned and funded). The Act signifies the Government taking a step back from the leadership role in Christchurch’s recovery to a more side-lined supportive role in its regeneration.
Regenerate Christchurch is a forward looking entity that will endeavour to re-create the Garden City consistent with the desires, aspirations and lifestyles of its residents. Ōtākaro Limited will lead and deliver the major anchor projects throughout the city, including the Christchurch Convention Centre, the Health Precinct, the Justice and Emergency Services Precinct and the Metro Sports Facility, amongst numerous others.
Regenerate Christchurch will predominantly set the direction of the regeneration mission with Ōtākaro Limited and Development Christchurch Limited acting as the delivery mechanisms. The entities will function independently but will liaise and collaborate on certain projects where their purposes and objectives overlap. Given its legislative establishment, Regenerate Christchurch has been given a life span of five years, to be succeeded by a CCC led organisation in April 2021, to continue its purpose.
A fundamental theme of the Act aims to recognise and integrate local leadership, focus on smaller geographic areas than its predecessor and limit Ministerial power. The Act promises a bright future for the city, with hopes to return the vibrancy, thrust and abundant economic, social and lifestyle opportunities to its residents. Whilst Regenerate Christchurch will attempt to enhance the whole of Christchurch and its greater surrounds, its primary focus will be on the rejuvenation and development of the central business district, residential red zones and New Brighton.
Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement Amendment Bill
The Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement Amendment Bill (Bill) was introduced to Parliament on 9 May 2016, by the Minister of Trade, Todd McClay. It was introduced as an omnibus bill, meaning that the intention of the Bill is to make minor and non-technical amendments to existing legislation in order for New Zealand to be in a position to comply with its obligations under the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (Agreement). The Agreement was signed by New Zealand on 4 February 2016 and the Bill marks the final step for New Zealand to be able to ratify the Agreement.
The Agreement is a free trade agreement between 12 countries in the Asia-Pacific region. Once the Agreement is finalised, those countries will be able to trade liberally between themselves under a set of consistent rules which all parties to the Agreement will be subject to. Whilst many of the obligations imposed on New Zealand under the Agreement are satisfied by current domestic legislation and policy, some amendments to domestic legislation are required in order to align domestic law with New Zealand’s obligations under the Agreement. The purpose of the Bill is to address the necessary amendments. Once the Bill is passed New Zealand will be able to ratify the Agreement. A copy of the Agreement can be found here.
The Bill amends 11 Acts. A number of the Acts amended are discussed below. A copy of the Bill can be obtained here.
The Copyright Act 1994 is proposed to be the most significantly amended Act by the Bill. The main amendments proposed by the Bill to the Copyright Act 1994 are to:
- increase the existing term of protection for all types of works by 20 years, e.g. for copyright in a literary work that means the period changes from the life of the author plus 50 years to the life of the author plus 70 years;
- give Customs the power to detain items suspected to be pirated copies;
- specifically address rights of performers, in particular, by:
- providing for new moral rights for performers covering identification of the performer and not subjecting the performance to derogative treatment;
- clarifying the rights of performers in relation to sound recording (currently performers’ rights in relation to sound recordings and films are the same);
- align rights concerning the transmission of performer’s rights with these applying in the case of copyright, including setting out the position of licences of the performer’s rights in a sound recording of a performance;
- updating the content management information provisions (ie provisions which prohibit changing information relating to certain information, such as the author of a work, for instance) to include within their scope information relating to performers and directors of films (and recharacterising them as rights management information provisions);
- amend the provisions dealing with technological protection measures (TPM) to:
- extend the prohibitions on TPMs to include (rather than exclude as is currently the case) access control devices;
- extend the exceptions to circumventing TPMs to permit certain other specified activities, subject to safeguards, including to continue receiving the benefit of computer programmes that are no longer supported by a remote server, for interoperability purposes, correcting security and protecting privacy;
- permitting regulations to alter existing exceptions to circumventing TPMs or setting out new exceptions (so long as certain conditions are met, such as there is no infringement of copyright);
- introduce provisions specifically protecting encrypted programme-carrying satellite and cable signals, including making it an offence to contravene those protections (eg unauthorised decoding).
The other main amendments proposed by the Bill are set out below:
- Brings the new tariff-rate quotas for export of dairy products to the United States under the export licensing regime in the Dairy Industry Restructuring Act 2001.
- Amends the Legislation Act 2012 to require copies of instruments to be published online and that publications of legislation and instruments comply with the international transparency obligations.
- Amends the Patents Act 2013 to:
- allow a grace period of one year for invention ideas that have been released into the public domain. This will mean that despite being in the public domain, inventors will not lose their ability to secure a patent on their invention in New Zealand, so long as the application is made within the grace period.
- permit a patent term to be extended if there has been an unreasonable delay by the Commissioner of Intellectual Property in granting the patent.
- Permits a Court to award damages under the Trade Marks 2002 as a remedy for infringement having regard to circumstances including the flagrancy of the infringement and any benefit accruing as a result of the infringement.
We will monitor progress of the Bill through Parliament. If you want further information on any aspect of the Bill or wish to make a submission when it is referred to select committee please contact a member of the Business Law team.
Budget 2016 key points
A brief overview from Budget 2016.
- The Budget 2016 indicates New Zealand’s economy is in good health and the government is clearly looking to continue building the economy, reduce debt and grow surplus’s while spending cautiously.
- Last year’s Budget focused on more on families, highlighted by a $790 million child hardship package, while this year’s attention is on infrastructure, science and innovation, and core services of health, law and order, and education.
- Population growth, strong tourism numbers and construction have helped drive economic growth and tax revenue.
- The additional $761.4 million for science and innovation will boost entrepreneurship, increase investment and help diversify the economy. The package focuses on research, apprenticeship programmes, and support regional economic development.
- An investment of $22.2 million was announced to establish a new national Computer Emergency Response Team (CERT) to prevent and respond to cyber-attacks and cybercrime. The commitment highlights the seriousness of cyber resilience for the New Zealand economy.
- Other investment includes a $2.1 billion public infrastructure package focused on transport, schools, and the infrastructure, a $652.1 million Social Investment package and an additional $2.2 billion for the health sector over four years.
Business Law Team
If you have any queries in respect of the above, or any other business law issues, please contact a member of Lane Neave’s Business Law Team:
Disclaimer: The content of these articles are general in nature and not intended as a substitute for specific professional advice on any matter and should not be relied upon for that purpose.