Leesburg, Va. – As a round of negotiations on the Trans-Pacific Partnership begins, public interest groups are joining members of Congress in their call for more transparency of the key nine-country trade agreement that’s being billed as the 21st Century Trade Agreement. Canada and Mexico are scheduled to join the next round of talks in December and the treaty is expected to cover broad trade provisions for nations that make up a third of the world’s economy.

CCIA, which will have three representatives at the Leesburg talks, Jonathan Band, Gary Horlick and Matt Schruers, has been concerned about rumors the agreement will add liabilities for Internet Service Providers. The TPP would export some provisions of the US’s Digital Millennium Copyright Act to other countries. But without also adding protections, the US could be essentially handing other countries a stick in the form of legal liabilities of US tech companies as well as our trading partners’ innovation sector.

“If we increase international intellectual property enforcement without also expanding protections for Internet services and platforms, we will create an international system hostile to the export of Internet services, where the U.S. has an extraordinary trade advantage.  We must ensure that we do not create a trade agreement that cripples one of our most successful industries,” said CCIA Vice President Schruers.

During the last round of negotiations in July, CCIA supported USTR’s proposed addition to the TPP to address copyright exceptions and limitations, but CCIA’s full range of concerns on issues including trademark fair use and the issue of buffer and temporary copies.

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