07.20.09

New Report Highlights Significant Contributions to the U.S. Economy by the Copyright Industries

Official Seal of the US House of Representatives

Monday, July 20, 2009 Contact: Sean Oblack (202) 225-4176

New Report Highlights Significant Contributions to the U.S. Economy by the Copyright Industries

Report underscores need for strong international intellectual property protections

Washington, D.C.:  The Congressional International Anti-Piracy Caucus, which is chaired by Senators Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) and Orrin Hatch (R-UT), and Congressmen Adam Schiff (D-CA) and Bob Goodlatte (R-VA), commended a new report released today by the International Intellectual Property Alliance (IIPA) that underscores the critical role that copyright industries play in supporting the U.S. economy.  The report concluded that the copyright industries, which include music producers, authors, filmmakers, software manufactures and other creative works, is one of the strongest sectors of the American economy.  The copyright industries contribute to economic growth in the U.S., account for a substantial part of the gross domestic product, employ millions of Americans, and have a trade surplus. However, according to industry estimates, global piracy of U.S. copyrighted works costs our economy around $58 billion each year, with 373,375 lost American jobs, $16.3 billion in lost earnings, and $2.6 billion in lost tax revenue to the government. 

"In tough economic times it's more important than ever to safeguard intellectual property," said Senator Whitehouse. "American copyright industries create millions of jobs, and generate millions of dollars in tax revenue. Piracy threatens those jobs and those revenues, and we need bipartisan solutions to stop it."

“Today’s report underscores how vitally important the copyright industry is to our nation’s economy,” said Senator Hatch.  “Now more than ever, it is imperative that we protect new ideas and investments in innovation and creativity to keep our copyright industries globally competitive.  America’s ingenuity is the cornerstone to a vibrant, thriving economy.”

“The copyright industries are one of the few bright spots in our struggling economy,” said Rep. Schiff.  “As a Representative of so many of these industries and their employees, I know firsthand the importance they play in providing quality jobs for Americans.  This report demonstrates that the copyright industries and the intellectual property they produce are essential to the future of the American economy.”

“With strong U.S. laws to protect intellectual property, it is no surprise that the U.S. copyright industries continue to be an extremely successful piece of the U.S. economy,” said Rep. Goodlatte.  “However, this sector is not indestructible, and we must continue to push hard for other countries to enact strong IP protections and to combat copyright piracy.”

The report issued today underscores the need to crack down on international piracy of U.S. movies, music, and other copyrighted works, in order to ensure the protection of this important and valuable sector of the U.S. economy. This new report, Copyright Industries in the U.S. Economy: The 2003-2007 Report, completed by Economists Incorporated, was release today at a press conference with the Secretary of Commerce Gary Locke at the Department of Commerce. The report demonstrates the continuing positive impact these industries have on the U.S. economy in terms of contribution to economic growth, high-paying jobs and international trade. The report can be accessed on the IIPA’s web site www.iipa.com.

In an effort to combat international copyright piracy the Congressional International Anti-Piracy Caucus releases a watch list each year calling attention to countries where piracy has reached alarming levels.  Earlier this year, the Caucus announced they will closely monitor the serious problems of copyright piracy in China, Russia, Canada, Spain, and Mexico.

The Congressional International Anti-Piracy Caucus, which was originally formed in 2003, is made up of over 70 members of Congress.  The goal of the Caucus is to provide briefings for Congressional delegations traveling to countries with significant piracy problems, staff and member briefings and forums on international intellectual property protection and piracy, demonstrations of new technologies and products designed to improve consumers’ entertainment experiences and to reduce piracy and to work closely with the committees of jurisdiction in the House and Senate on related hearings and legislation.