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          Global business leaders remind EU leaders of importance of ACTA to economic growth and job creation

          • Paris, 04 June 2012

          New report links ACTA to potential economic growth of €50 billion and 960,000 new jobs in EU

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          Business Action to Stop Counterfeiting and Piracy (BASCAP), an initiative of the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC), today released a new study by the internationally respected economic research firm, Frontier Economics, showing the significant economic growth and job creation potential of EU approval of the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA).

          “The current debate about ACTA in the EU has been focused on a wealth of misinformation and unsubstantiated claims about how the provisions of ACTA will harm the EU,” said Jeffrey Hardy, BASCAP Director. “At a time when Europe is facing an unprecedented economic crisis, with little to no growth and high unemployment, the real discussion should be focused on how ACTA will lead to greater protection of intellectual property around the globe and how this will benefit the EU economy. This new report provides several different scenarios for what would happen to EU exports, economic growth and job creation with the adoption of ACTA by the current signatories, including the EU, and from expansion to four other countries. We believe it is time for the EU decision-makers to look at the data and recognize the enormous potential value to the EU economy that can result from adoption of ACTA.”

          The new report concludes that the EU can expect to see increased trade to the ACTA signatories, and that this increase in exports will lead to an increase of up to €19 billion in the EU economy. If ACTA can be expanded beyond the initial group of signatory countries, including the BRIC countries (Brazil, Russia, India and China), the value to the EU country will be significantly greater. The increase in exports to the BRIC countries alone that could be expected with greater intellectual property (IP) protection under ACTA could increase EU growth by a further €23 billion. With stronger enforcement of IP rights in countries where counterfeit products are rife (i.e. China), EU Gross Value Added could increase by a further €8 billion.

          Full acceptance of ACTA by the current signatories, including the EU, and working to extend ACTA membership to BRIC economies could boost European output by a total of €50 billion, and create as many as 960,000 new jobs.

          For perspective, an increase in GVA of €50 billion represents about 0.4% of total 2011 European GVA. This potential is critical since the EU economy grew by just 1.5% in 2011 and growth in 2012 is forecast to be zero for the EU and -0.3% for the Euro area. Forecasts for 2013 put growth in the EU at less than 1.5%.

          “Government efforts to stabilize the economy and stimulate economic growth, trade and employment should not ignore the critical role that IP protection plays in driving innovation, development and jobs,” Mr Hardy said. “ACTA will bring the EU’s strong regime of IP rights protection and enforcement to its key trading partners, leading to a reduction in unfair competition from counterfeit and pirated products and opening markets to imports of legitimate products. Given the magnitude of EU exports to these markets, ACTA would significantly increase the potential for EU exports, driving the associated benefits of higher growth and employment.”

          The massive infiltration of counterfeit and pirated goods creates an enormous drain on the global economy – crowding out billions in legitimate economic activity and facilitating an "underground economy" that deprives governments of revenues for vital public services, forces higher burdens on taxpayers, dislocates hundreds of thousands of legitimate jobs and exposes consumers to dangerous and ineffective products. For business, these effects lead to greater risk, lower returns on investment, less job creation and in the extreme, market exit.

          Government efforts to strengthen IP enforcement regimes should therefore not be considered costs, but rather investments that pay tangible dividends to economic development and society. Now is the time to increase, not decrease, the resources committed to stopping the illegal trade in counterfeits and piracy.

          Click here to read ACTA, in the EU: Assessment of Potential Export, Economic and Employment Gains

          For media inquiries contact:

          Dawn Chardonnal

          ICC Communications and Media Relations Manager

          Tel + 33 (0) 1 49 53 28 23

          Click here to email

          For information on BASCAP, please contact:

          Jeff Hardy

          ICC-BASCAP Director

          Tel +1 239 935 9839

          Click hereto email

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