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Remarks at the Release of Intellectual Property Report

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AS PREPARED FOR DELIVERY
Wednesday, April 11, 2012
CONTACT OFFICE OF PUBLIC AFFAIRS
202-482-4883

Commerce Secretary John Bryson
Remarks at the Release of Intellectual Property Report

Thank you, Victoria. And thank you for all the hard work that you have done to help make this day possible.

It’s great to be with all of you today, including my colleagues from the administration as well as President Donohue from the U.S. Chamber and President Trumka from the AFL-CIO.

One of my core beliefs–one that I imagine you share–is that the U.S. is significantly different in important ways from every other advanced economy. 

We’re startup people. We break the norms. We’re willing to take chances on new ideas.

Every day, our entrepreneurs and businesses bring new products and services that the whole world wants. They drive innovation. They bolster our economic growth. And–yes–they create jobs.

Everyone throughout the administration has been highly focused on helping them do just that.

With this first-of-its-kind report we’re releasing today, it’s clear that intellectual property protection is more critical than ever. 

When Americans know that their ideas will be protected, they have greater incentive to pursue advances and technologies that help keep us competitive.

IP protections give our businesses the confidence they need to invest in their own future and–importantly–to hire more workers.

Today, we have a clearer picture than ever of just how important IP protection is to American jobs. 

I want to thank our newly-confirmed Deputy Secretary Rebecca Blank, our Undersecretary Dave Kappos, our Chief Economist Mark Doms, Stewart Graham of the Patent and Trademark Office, and everyone who contributed to this report.

I will open with the key highlights of the report and my colleagues from the Commerce Department will then go into greater detail.

This report shows that nearly 35 percent of our Gross Domestic comes from “IP-intensive industries.”

These 75 industries support–directly or indirectly–40 million jobs. And these jobs pay significantly more–on average than others.

The report also finds that IP protections are central to another key driver of our economy: exports. IP-intensive industries supported over $775 billion worth of U.S. goods exported in 2010. That’s about 61 percent.

At the Commerce Department, we are doing more than ever to make sure our intellectual property system is strong and sound. For example, we’re implementing the provisions of the groundbreaking America Invents Act that President Obama signed into law. We are modernizing and streamlining our patent review process, so that businesses can get their ideas to market faster. We are hiring more experts to help reduce the backlog of patents. And we’re doing more than ever to target counterfeiting and piracy both here and abroad.

Also this year, we are developing a long-term national IP strategy. This will ensure that our patent system continues to serve as the world’s gold standard in IP.

In closing, I think this report provides all of us with an important opportunity to recommit ourselves to strong intellectual property protections. 

This is something we must do to ensure that the creative and innovative spirit of the American people can continue to drive our prosperity–as it has done for centuries. 

Thank you, and I’ll now hand it over to Tom Donohue.