WASHINGTON (July 12, 2018) — Today, ACTION for Trade sent a letter to Senators Chris Coons (D-DE) and Rob Portman (R-OH) to announce its support of the Senate UK Trade Caucus.
“A U.S.-UK trade agreement would present an excellent opportunity for both countries to set a high bar for intellectual property protections in a free trade agreement and serve as a model for others in promoting creativity and innovation,” said Brian Pomper, executive director of ACTION for Trade. “ACTION for Trade commends Senator Portman and Senator Coons for their leadership and stands ready to work with them in this important effort to bring our two countries closer together.”
IP-intensive industries in the United States support 58 million jobs and comprise 38 percent of the U.S. GDP. They also account for more than half of all U.S. exports.
The United Kingdom is a vital U.S. trading partner — it imported more than $3.6 billion worth of medicines in 2017 alone. And UK firms paid more than $4.4 billion to license American audio-visual works in 2016.
“The UK is our 7th largest export market,” said Pomper. “We should strive to strengthen this relationship through strong IP protections in a bilateral trade agreement.”
Weak international IP protections negatively impact a diverse array of U.S. industries. Cumulatively, the United States loses $227 billion every year due to counterfeiting, pirating, and the theft of trade secrets from around the world.
“The Senate UK Trade Caucus has a unique opportunity to help to set a modern precedent for IP protections in international trade agreements,” Pomper said. “We look forward to supporting the Caucus as it works toward this goal.”
About ACTION for Trade: The American Creative, Technology, and Innovative Organizations Network is a coalition of trade associations and businesses dedicated to shaping U.S. trade policy. ACTION for Trade aims to make sure U.S. trade policy and trade agreements foster innovation and creativity and protect the intellectual property that drives U.S. trade competitiveness. ACTION for Trade also seeks to help shape global trade standards to advance American creativity and innovation, to grow IPR-enabled U.S. services trade surplus, and to open new markets for American creators and innovators.
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