IP Commission Highlights “Hemorrhage” of IP Theft


By Mark Elliot

Many have attempted to tackle the critical question of how to define the size and scope of intellectual property theft and its impact on the U. S. economy.  Fortunately, the Commission on the Theft of American Intellectual Property, spearheaded by Governor Jon Huntsman and Admiral Dennis Blair, has taken on this important task and released their findings earlier today. We commend Admiral Blair and Ambassador Huntsman for their leadership of the Commission, and for their steadfast effort to highlight the growing “hemorrhage” of intellectual property (IP) theft.

As highlighted by the report, the annual revenue loss due to IP theft equates to current annual level of U.S. exports to Asia — more than $300 billion. The report also notes that millions of jobs could be added to our economy with significant efforts to strengthen IP enforcement around the world. In fact, we have reported in our study that over 55 million jobs in the U. S. are supported by IP intensive industries.

In its report, the Commission found that IP theft from American companies has grown massive and out-of-control. We agree that the scope of global IP theft is far-reaching, hitting every American state and a large swath of American industry, with damages causing what may be irreparable harm.

It is crucial for America and the future of our knowledge based and innovative economy for U. S. policy makers and thought leaders to deal with this problem and we echo the report’s call to action.

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