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BSA Calls for Removal of Market Access Barriers and Stronger Intellectual Property Enforcement in Special 301 Trade Filing

WASHINGTON — February 8, 2018 — In its annual Special 301 filing today, BSA | The Software Alliance highlighted foreign countries that maintain market access barriers to software services, and also emphasized the need for the proper protection and enforcement intellectual property rights. The filing stresses the importance of eliminating market access barriers that hamper the flow of data across borders, which is essential to the ability of US companies to keep innovating, creating American jobs, and powering the growth of the digital economy.

Software has a profound impact on the American economy. A recent study from the BSA Foundation shows the software industry contributes more than $1.1 trillion to the US GDP, supports more than 10 million jobs with significant impact in all 50 states, and invests more than $63 billion in research and development. 

“Software is a powerful contributor to the strength of the US economy and a dynamic factor in creating jobs, but it can only fulfill this potential internationally if market access barriers for US companies are dismantled and intellectual property rights are respected and enforced,” said Victoria Espinel, President and CEO of BSA | The Software Alliance. “The Special 301 process is an important way for the United States to engage foreign governments in an effort to remove impediments for US companies seeking to serve those markets, such as restrictions on the movement of data across borders.”

The submission recommended seven countries be placed on the US Trade Representative’s (USTR) Priority Watch List: Argentina, Chile, China, India, Indonesia, Ukraine, and Vietnam. In addition, BSA recommended eight countries for placement on USTR’s Watch List: Brazil, Greece, Kazakhstan, the Republic of Korea, Mexico, Nigeria, Romania, and Thailand. 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.

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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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