News / Economy

US Officials Stress Need for Progress on Intellectual Property Rights, Market Access in China

US Officials Stress Need for Progress on Intellectual Property Rights, Market Access in China
US Officials Stress Need for Progress on Intellectual Property Rights, Market Access in China
William Ide

When the United States and China on Monday begin two days of talks in Washington, U.S. officials are expected to discuss the value of China’s currency, the yuan, and Chinese officials will likely raise the issue of America's huge budget deficit.

But experts and American officials say two other issues also need urgent attention -  the lax enforcement of intellectual property rights in China and China's policies that limit market access for foreign companies.  

For years, Chinese and U.S. officials have been discussing the problem of pirated computer software, music and films - and yet, the problem persists virtually unabated.

Michael Schlesinger, counsel to the U.S.-based International Intellectual Property Alliance, says the piracy of computer software in China costs U.S. companies billions of dollars each year. "China has made commitments in bilateral negotiations with the U.S. dating back to 2004 to curtail software piracy. Yet the value of unlicensed software use in China more than doubled from $3.6 billion in 2004 to $7.6 billion in 2009," he said.

In recent months, Chinese officials have promised to seriously address the problem - including pledging to begin dealing with the problem of pirated software use by Chinese-owned state enterprises.

Michael Schlesinger, who testified a recent U.S.- China Security and Economic Review Commission hearing, says Beijing's commitments are significant.

He says the problem is affecting company revenues and international competition.

"Software piracy in China harms more than just U.S. software firms. Software is a critical input in production for business in many sectors. The unlicensed use of software by business in China across a wide array of sectors results in products from these firms competing unfairly against products made by U.S. firms that pay for the software they use," he said.

Testifying at the same hearing, Ken Wasch, president of the Washington-based Software and Information Industry Association, noted that China not only is duplicating software and selling it domestically, but also exporting hard copies overseas and as well as over the Internet.

"China is becoming the primary source for illegal intellectual property goods of all kinds, being distributed through Chinese servers," he said.

According to Schlesinger, intellectual piracy and Beijing's policies to boost Chinese firms are keeping U.S. companies out of one of the world’s biggest and fastest growing markets.

"There are also a growing number of policies being rolled out by the Chinese government that can severely restrict access to the legal market in China for foreign software companies. These so-called 'indigenous innovation' policies seek to use government procurement, standards setting and other levers to bolster domestic technology companies by shutting out foreign competitors and compelling transfers of technology to them," he said.

Indigenous innovation and intellectual property protection are two key issues that U.S. Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner and Commerce Secretary Gary Locke touched on in the run up to this week's Strategic and Economic Dialogue talks.

Speaking last week at the Woodrow Wilson Center for International Scholars, Locke said that despite increased Chinese investment in the United States in recent years.

"[T]hat is not the case for American companies operating in China, where they are frequently shut out of entire industries or they are forced to give up proprietary information as a condition of operating in China.  This imbalance of opportunity is a major barrier to continued improvement of the United States and China’s commercial relationship," he said.

Locke says that although Beijing often pledges to improve conditions for foreign companies in China, those promises frequently are not implemented.

Beijing complains about market access in the United States and American restrictions on the export of U.S. high technology goods to China.

The U.S.-China Strategic and Economic Dialogue talks are scheduled to begin Monday morning and finish Tuesday afternoon.

You May Like

Jihadist Assassin says Goal of Tunisia Murders Was Chaos

Abu Muqatil at-Tunusi’s remarks in a propaganda interview also cast light on attack on Bardo Museum More

Russia Denies License to Tatar-Language TV Station in Crimea

OSCE official says denial shows 'politically selective censorship of free and independent voices in Crimea is continuing' More

Kenyan Startups Tackle Expensive Remittances Through Bitcoin

Some think services could give Western Union a run for its money, though others say it’s still got a long way to go More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
For Obama, It's More Business Than Friendships With World Leadersi
X
Aru Pande
April 01, 2015 9:09 PM
The rift between President Barack Obama and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has put a spotlight on the importance of the American leader’s personal relationships with other world leaders and what role such friendships play in foreign policy. VOA's Aru Pande reports.
Video

Video For Obama, It's More Business Than Friendships With World Leaders

The rift between President Barack Obama and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has put a spotlight on the importance of the American leader’s personal relationships with other world leaders and what role such friendships play in foreign policy. VOA's Aru Pande reports.
Video

Video Buhari: Nigeria Has ‘Embraced Democracy’

Nigeria woke up to a new president-elect Wednesday, Muhammadu Buhari. But people say democracy is the real winner as the country embarks on its first peaceful handover of power since the end of military rule in 1999. VOA’s Anne Look reports from Abuja.
Video

Video Tiny Camera Sees Inside Blood Vessels

Ahead of any surgical procedure, doctors try to learn as much as possible about the state of the organs they plan to operate on. A new camera developed in the Netherlands can now make that easier - giving surgeons an incredibly detailed look inside blood vessels, all the way to the patient’s heart. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Latin American Groups Seek Fans at Texas Music Festival

Latin American music groups played all over Austin, Texas, during the recent South by Southwest festival, and some made fans out of locals as well as people from around the world who had come to hear music. Such exposure can boost such groups' image back home. VOA’s Greg Flakus reports.
Video

Video Stockton Community, Police, Work to Improve Relations

Relations are tense between minority communities and police departments around the United States following police shootings that have generated widely-publicized protests. VOA's Mike O’Sullivan reports from Stockton, California, where police and community groups are working toward solutions, with backing from Washington.
Video

Video Indiana Controversy Highlights Divergent Meanings of Religious Freedom

Indiana’s state government has triggered a nationwide controversy by approving a law that critics say is aimed at allowing discrimination against gays and lesbians. The controversy stems from divergent notions of religious freedom in America. VOA's Jerome Socolovsky reports.
Video

Video Report: State of Black America a 'Tale of Two Nations'

The National Urban League has described this year's "State of Black America" report as a "tale of two nations." The group's annual report, released earlier this month (March), found that under an equality index African Americans had only 72% parity compared to whites in areas such as education, economics, health, social justice and civic engagement. It’s a gap that educators and students at Brooklyn’s Medgar Evers College are looking to close. VOA's Daniela Schrier reports from the school.
Video

Video Film Tells Story of Musicians in Mali Threatened by Jihadists

At this year's annual South by Southwest film and music festival in Austin, Texas, some musicians from Mali were on hand to promote a film about how their lives were upturned by jihadists who destroyed ancient treasures in the city of Timbuktu and prohibited anyone from playing music under threat of death. As VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from Austin, some are afraid to return to their hometowns even though the jihadists are no longer in control there.
Video

Video Ebola Vaccine Trials Underway in West Africa

Ebola has claimed the lives of more than 10,000 people in West Africa. Since last summer, researchers have rushed to get anti-Ebola vaccines into clinical trials. While it's too early to say that any of the potential vaccines work, some scientists say they are seeing strong results from some of the studies. VOA's Carol Pearson reports.
Video

Video Philippines Wants Tourists Spending Money at New Casinos

Tourism is a multi-billion dollar industry in the Philippines. Close to five million foreign visitors traveled there last year, perhaps lured by the country’s tropical beaches. But Jason Strother reports from Manila that the country hopes to entice more travelers to stay indoors and spend money inside new casinos.
Video

Video Civilian Casualties Push Men to Join Rebels in Ukraine

The continued fighting in eastern Ukraine and the shelling of civilian neighborhoods seem to be pushing more men to join the separatist fighters. Many of the new recruits are residents of Ukraine made bitter by new grievances, as well as old. VOA's Patrick Wells reports.
Video

Video Cambodian Land Grabs Threaten Traditional Communities

Indigenous communities in Cambodia's Ratanakiri province say the government’s economic land concession policy is taking away their land and traditional way of life, making many fear that their identity will soon be lost. Local authorities, though, have denied this is the case. VOA's Say Mony went to investigate and filed this report, narrated by Colin Lovett.

VOA Blogs

Circumventing Censorship

An Internet Primer for Healthy Web Habits

As surveillance and censoring technologies advance, so, too, do new tools for your computer or mobile device that help protect your privacy and break through Internet censorship.
More

World Currencies

EUR
USD
0.9298
JPY
USD
120.21
GBP
USD
0.6773
CAD
USD
1.2675
INR
USD
62.497

Rates may not be current.