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Trade

Improving U.S. companies’ ability to sell to more markets and customers abroad is critical for economic growth and job creation in the U.S., as is avoiding unnecessary trade wars that hurt American consumers, workers, and businesses of all sizes.  Improved market access for the technology sector is essential to this effort.  TechNet supports:

  • Further reductions in tariff and non-tariff barriers to information, communications, and advanced energy technology products, services, and investments.
  • Protections for the free flow of data across borders, strong protections for intellectual property (including source code), and provisions ensuring reasonable limitations upon intermediary liability.
  • Greater expansion of market access for trade in services, including those that are digitally delivered.
  • Making sure U.S. companies can compete on a level playing field for procurement opportunities with the governments of our trading partners.
  • Allowing products with commercial encryption to be traded freely.
  • Heightened attention to the need for global supply and value chains — particularly important to global innovation — which often are disrupted by government imposition of localization requirements, including forced technology transfers and investment conditions that discriminate against U.S. interests.
  • Customs modernization and open payment systems that support digital trade flows, particularly by small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs).  This support includes customs relief to small businesses operating abroad by compelling our trading partners to raise their de minimis thresholds to better align with the standards of the U.S.
  • A copyright framework modeled on current U.S. law that incentivizes innovation by providing reliable protection for all creative works, including software.  This should include appropriate limitations and exceptions, consistent with current U.S. law, to drive the growth of new emerging technologies, such as machine learning and text and data mining.
  • Interoperable data privacy and cybersecurity requirements and, where available, utilizing international standards and best practices.
  • Securing commitments by our trading partners to build the capabilities of their national entities responsible for coordinated vulnerability disclosures undertaken voluntarily by the private sector.
  • The requirement in all future free trade agreements (FTAs) negotiated by the U.S. that our trading partners join the World Trade Organization’s (WTO) Information Technology Agreement (ITA).
  • Passage of the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA) by Congress; the advancement of comprehensive trade negotiations with the European Union, Japan, and United Kingdom; and a successful outcome in the WTO’s e-Commerce/Digital Trade negotiations.
  • Addressing concerns about China’s trade practices via targeted policy responses and international coalition efforts, not tariffs that lead to higher prices, slower economic output, and weaker demand for American products.
  • The 2019 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) included the Foreign Investment Risk Review Modernization Act (FIRRMA), which reforms the Committee on Foreign Investment in the U.S. (CFIUS), and the Export Control Reform Act (ECRA), which creates new processes focused on emerging technologies.  Congress and the administration should ensure that FIRRMA and ECRA are implemented in ways that keep the U.S. at the forefront of innovation in emerging technologies while effectively addressing important national security objectives.
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