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Special 301

The US Trade Representative is required by law to issue annually determinations of “those foreign countries that deny adequate and effective protection of intellectual property rights, or deny fair and equitable market access to United States persons that rely upon intellectual property protection.”  (Section 182 of the Trade Act of 1974, as amended by the Omnibus Trade and Competitiveness Act of 1988 and the Uruguay Round Agreements Act (19 U.S.C. § 2242)). 

The global software industry, including BSA members, face an increasingly complex and more difficult trade and economic environment, with many countries erecting barriers to emerging business models, such as cross-border data services, that will drive the 21st century economy. 

BSA’s submission focuses on two sets of issues: the unacceptable and highly disruptive barriers to market access our members encounter; and the staggering amount of unlicensed software used globally, estimated at over US$52 billion in 2015 (see BSA’s Global Software Survey).

BSA filed its own submission for the fifth year in order to highlight the broad range of issues affecting the software industry globally. The submission, with individual reports on 10 countries and one region of concern, describes BSA members’ challenges in enforcing copyrights, patents, and trade secrets, as well as unfair market access barriers that deny BSA members fair and equitable market access in many of these countries.