Review of the Copyright Act 1994

In June 2017 the Minister of Commerce and Consumer Affairs released a terms of reference to launch a review of the Copyright Act 1994.

It is important we ensure that our copyright regime is fit for purpose in the context of a rapidly changing technological environment which is impacting the way we create, distribute and consume content. Insights into this environment were highlighted in the Government’s Study of the role of copyright and designs in the creative sector, completed in December 2016.

The Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment has been preparing an Issues Paper, which is likely to be released for public consultation in the fourth quarter of 2018

Terms of Reference

The terms of reference [PDF 167KB] outline the objectives, context and process for the review.

The objectives for the review are to:

  • assess how well the Copyright Act 1994 is meeting our objectives for copyright
  • identify any barriers to achieving the objectives and how these affect creators, publishers, distributors, users and consumers
  • put together a plan to address any issues that we identify.

These objectives, together with the scope and staging of the review, will be informed by the issues paper consultation process.

How can you get involved?

Subscribe to our mailing list if you are interested in receiving updates on the review. We will send out a newsletter periodically.

You can find all previous newsletters here:

 Contact the Copyright Act Review team if there is anything you would like to raise or discuss.

We also intend to consult formally with the public on the review once the Issues Paper is released, which we expect will be in the fourth quarter 2018.

Following that consultation process, the Government will make decisions on the scope of potential chances to the Copyright Act 1994 and plan the next steps in the review.

Related documents

Previous decisions

In 2003, the previous government agreed that the Copyright Act 1994 be reviewed to assess its effectiveness for digital technology, five years from the enactment of the Copyright (New Technologies) Amendment Act.

Read more…

Contact us

Subscribe to receive updates on the review

For further information (except legal advice), please contact:

Business Law Team
Commerce, Consumers and Communications Branch
Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment
15 Stout Street
PO Box 1473

Phone | 04-472 0030 
Fax | 04-499 1791
Email | Copyright Act Review