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As Pacific Trade Negotiations Enter Critical Phase, BSA Urges Focus on Digital Issues

Washington, DC — September 26, 2013

BSA | The Software Alliance and nine other industry associations today urged that the multilateral Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) trade agreement keep pace with the digital economy by removing barriers to trade in digital products and services.

In a joint letter to US Trade Representative Michael Froman, the associations urged that US negotiators make it a top priority to secure clear and enforceable rules in the TPP to ensure data can flow across borders and to protect digital products and services from discriminatory treatment. These rules would help keep markets open to cloud computing, data analytics and other innovative products and services from the software industry and others. They also would ensure businesses of all types can effectively manage global operations that run on information technologies.

The letter read, in part:

“The ability to store, process and transmit data across borders is critical for industries from many sectors of the economy, from information technology to manufacturing, finance and retailing. Companies large and small increasingly rely on global flows of data to manage operations, improve productivity, build relationships, and deliver products and services to customers around the world. Moreover, consumers in countries throughout the world are looking to digital products and services to enhance their quality of life in many areas.

“Yet current trade rules are insufficient to ensure that borders remain open to data flows and that digital products and services receive non-discriminatory treatment in key markets. It is essential that the TPP establish clear and enforceable obligations to ensure providers of digitally delivered products and services — and companies that rely on cross-border data flows to manage their global operations — are not impeded from offering these products and services or conducting their operations internationally.”

Click here for the full text of the joint letter.

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About BSA

BSA | The Software Alliance ( is the leading advocate for the global software industry before governments and in the international marketplace. Its members are among the world’s most innovative companies, creating software solutions that spark the economy and improve modern life. With headquarters in Washington, DC, and operations in more than 60 countries, BSA pioneers compliance programs that promote legal software use and advocates for public policies that foster technology innovation and drive growth in the digital economy.
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