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The Need and Purposes of a "Nanotechnology Act" in Germany and Europe
Volume 3, Issue 4

Thorsten Beyerlein, Mayer, Brown, Rowe & Maw LLP

The author addresses the issue of the need and purposes of a “Nanotechnology Act” in Germany and in the European Community. Presently, nanotechnology is not governed by special laws in Germany or in the European Community. Legal questions with respect to nanotechnology are dealt with in the context of the existing laws (e.g. patent law, chemicals law). Nevertheless, legislature and industrial associations are currently examining the suitability of the “law in action.” The author demonstrates with respect to patent law, chemicals law, tort law, and consumer, worker and environmental protection law that there is a need for an adjustment of several legal provisions; however, a mere “Nanotechnology Act” is not indispensable.

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