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Intellectual Property Rights

Supporting American jobs by promoting America’s innovation advantage.
As the world’s most innovative economy, strong and effective protection and enforcement of IP rights is critical to U.S. economic growth and American jobs. Nearly 40 million American jobs are directly or indirectly attributable to “IP-intensive” industries. These jobs pay higher wages to their workers, and these industries drive approximately 60 percent of U.S. merchandise exports and a large share of services exports.
In TPP, we are working to advance strong and balanced rules that will protect and promote U.S. exports of IP-intensive products and services throughout the Asia-Pacific region for the benefit of producers and consumers of those goods and services in all TPP countries. The provisions that the United States is seeking – guided by the careful balance achieved in existing U.S. law – will promote an open, innovative, and technologically-advanced Asia-Pacific region, accelerating invention and creation of new products and industries across TPP countries, while at the same time ensuring outcomes that enable all TPP countries to draw on the full benefits of scientific, technological, and medical innovation, and take part in development and enjoyment of new media and the arts.
  • Establish standards that build on the foundations established in existing international intellectual property agreements including the:
    • WTO Agreement on Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS).
    • World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) Copyright Treaty.
    • WIPO Performances and Phonograms Treaty.
    • Patent Cooperation Treaty.
  • Establish strong protections for patents, trademarks, and copyrights.
  • Establish strong measures to prevent theft of trade secrets, including cyber theft of trade secrets.
  • Establish rules that promote transparency and due process with respect to trademarks and geographical indications.
  • Secure fair, equitable, and non-discriminatory market access opportunities for U.S. individuals and businesses that rely on intellectual property.
  • Secure strong and fair enforcement rules to protect against trademark counterfeiting and copyright piracy, including rules allowing increased penalties in cases where counterfeit or pirated goods threaten consumer health or safety.
  • Close loopholes that let dangerous counterfeits come across borders and get into the supply chain, for example when counterfeiters ship products and labels separately.
  • Secure commitments that obligate countries to seek to achieve balance in their copyright systems by means of, among other approaches, limitations or exceptions that allow for the use of copyrighted works for purposes such as:
    • Criticism.
    • Comment.
    • News reporting.
    • Teaching.
    • Research.
  • Establish Internet service provider (ISP) copyright safe harbors that, along with strong and balanced provisions regarding technological protection measures, foster new business models and advance legitimate digital trade.
  • Secure pharmaceutical IP provisions that:
    • Promote innovation and the development of new, lifesaving medicines.
    • Create opportunities for robust generic drug competition.
    • Promote affordable access to medicines, taking into account levels of development among the TPP countries and their existing laws and international commitments.
  • Confirm that intellectual property commitments are aligned with the Doha Declaration on TRIPS and Public Health, affirming the rights of countries to take measures to promote public health.
  • Make it easier for businesses to search, register, and protect their trademarks and patents in new markets, which is particularly important for small businesses.
  • Clarify that enforcement remedies are available with respect to state owned enterprises, consistent with international disciplines.


For more information on intellectual property rights, visit WWW.USTR.GOV/ISSUE-AREAS/INTELLECTUAL-PROPERTY

Intellectual Property Helps Drive Innovation