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Office of the Press Secretary

For Immediate Release November 1, 1995


I am pleased to sign into law S. 1111, a bill to provide enhanced protection of biotechnology process patents. This bill will update current patent law to provide the protection American biotechnology companies need to continue developing new products. American consumers will benefit from improvements in the diagnosis, cure, or treatment of disease and from the production of healthier, more abundant foods.

Process patents are especially important in biotechnology, since part of the genius of that field is to produce commercial quantities of breakthrough products through new and inventive processes. If the innovative process used to make a biotechnology product is not protected by patent, American biotechnology will remain vulnerable to foreign imitation. This bill will provide necessary new protection for processes, spurring innovation and keeping American jobs in America.

In less than two decades, the biotechnology industry has created more than 100,000 high-wage American jobs and it now generates annual sales of over $7 billion. Originating in the United States, biotechnology has already produced life-saving drugs that dissolve blood clots in heart attack victims and treat anemia in patients suffering from chronic kidney failure. It has helped produce disease-resistant plants, more nutritious foods, effective waste treatment systems, and methods to clean and protect the environment. American companies working to commercialize breakthrough products should not be required to face unfair competition from overseas.

This bill addresses the need for current patent laws to keep pace with the rapid growth in biotechnology. It was passed with the strong support of this Administration and broad bipartisan support in the Congress. I am pleased to sign S. 1111 into law to ensure the continued development of important products for American consumers and continued U.S. job growth in this field.



November 1, 1995.

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