WASHINGTON — February 9, 2017 — In its annual Special 301 filing today, BSA | The Software Alliance urged the US Government to work with its trading partners to remove market access barriers, which hamper the flow of data across borders, preventing US companies from providing essential services. The filing also stressed the need for the proper protection and enforcement of all forms of intellectual property. The international movement of data is crucial to helping US companies, including BSA members, continue innovating, creating American jobs, and driving the growth of the digital economy.
Software has a profound impact on the American economy. A recent BSA study shows the software industry contributes more than $1 trillion to the US GDP, nearly 10 million jobs, and $52 billion in research and development (with significant impact in each of the 50 states). The industry’s success also expands America’s economic potential across numerous other sectors.
“The economic contributions made by the software industry positions it as a powerful catalyst for job growth,” said Victoria Espinel, President & CEO of BSA | The Software Alliance. “We encourage the US Government to continue leveraging all trade mechanisms at its disposal, including Special 301, to persuade trading partners to provide fair and equitable market access for US companies – particularly, allowing the movement of data across borders. This will help ensure the continued health and growth of the software sector and its contribution to the US economy and job creation.”
The submission recommended eight countries be placed on the US Trade Representative’s (USTR) Priority Watch List, including China and India. In addition, BSA recommended nine countries for placement on USTR’s Watch List, including Mexico and Greece, and denoted Spain as a Country of Concern. BSA also requested that the European Union be highlighted as a Region of Concern due to growing challenges to providing innovative digital services, including measures that affect the movement of data across borders faced by US companies.
For a copy of BSA’s full submission, click here.