New U.S. Business Alliance Urges Action to Stop India’s Discriminatory Trading Practices
The Alliance for Fair Trade with India Launches to Protect U.S. Economy and Jobs
WASHINGTON, D.C., June 18, 2013 – A new alliance representing major sectors of the U.S. economy launched today in support of increased action to resolve discriminatory trade practices, including the erosion of intellectual property (IP) rights in India. The Alliance for Fair Trade with India (AFTI) is co-chaired by the National Association of Manufacturers and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce’s Global Intellectual Property Center.
Over the last year, the Government of India has systematically discriminated against a wide range of U.S. innovative products and exports in order to benefit India’s business and industrial community at the expense of American jobs. These actions constitute a disturbing trend that puts at risk a growing bilateral trade relationship worth over $60 billion in 2012 alone.
“India’s unfair trade practices against U.S. manufactured exports is putting jobs at risk and harming American manufacturing workers,” said NAM Vice President for International Economic Affairs Linda Dempsey. “The Obama Administration must engage the Indian government in high-level discussions to put an end to these practices to protect manufacturers’ competitiveness and jobs.”
“In recent months, India has systematically failed to respect global intellectual property standards, causing an impact to its investment potential,” said Mark Elliot, Executive Vice President of the GIPC. “From unprecedented patent revocations and denials to insufficient copyright enforcement, India has established itself as an outlier in the global economy. If this is truly to be India’s ‘Decade of Innovation,’ the government must promote robust IP policies that incubate both homegrown and international innovators.”
In a cross-sector report comparing IP systems across the globe, Measuring Momentum, the GIPC found that India consistently ranked last, behind Brazil, China, and Russia, in promotion and enforcement of patents, copyrights, and trademarks.
Earlier this month, in a letter sent to President Obama, seventeen business groups urged the U.S. government to end discrimination against innovative products and manufacturing exports and restore American jobs currently being lost to India’s unfair trade policies.
“It is time the Government of India ended discrimination against our nation’s exporters and took steps to ensure it is not repeated in the future,” the letter noted. “To achieve this result, we urge the U.S. government immediately to initiate bilateral engagement at the highest levels and to coordinate closely with the European Union and other like-minded economies.”
In the coming weeks, AFTI will work with the Administration and members of Congress to pursue public policy options that help create a level playing field for U.S. exporters operating in India. Additionally, AFTI will outline the consequences of inaction, specifically as they relate to job creation, economic growth and continued innovation.
AFTI members include: The National Association of Manufacturers, U.S Chamber of Commerce’s Global Intellectual Property Center, American Business Conference, American Foundry Society, Biotechnology Industry Association, California Manufacturers & Technology Association, CropLife America, the Emergency Committee for American Trade, Motion Picture Association of America, National Equipment Manufacturers Association, National Foreign Trade Council, Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America, Solar Energy Industries Association, and The Telecommunications Industry Association.
The Alliance for Fair Trade with India (AFTI) is committed to supporting U.S. businesses fighting against unfair and discriminatory treatment in India. For more information, go to AFTIndia.org.