Tonight the U.S. Senate took a huge step toward protecting manufacturing products and processes from the current onslaught of intellectual property (IP) theft by passing the Defend Trade Secrets Act. NAM President and CEO Jay Timmons released the following statement after the bill’s passage, citing the important role IP has for manufacturers of all sizes:
“Manufacturers in America are the world leaders in innovation. The know-how to perfect their products can take years, even decades. These days, a competitor can steal that knowledge with the click of a mouse, costing a company good-paying jobs or even its entire business. This is a critical issue facing manufacturers, one that will define competition and success in the 21st century. That’s why we need all the tools possible to protect the superior knowledge and products that set our industry apart.
“IP can comprise up to 80 percent of the value of a company’s knowledge portfolio, and theft of these resources costs U.S. businesses roughly $250 billion a year. Manufacturers need a strong, unified federal policy that will enforce strict laws to protect what many businesses consider their most valued corporate assets. Today’s vote is a step toward updating our laws and helping manufacturers prevent IP theft aggressively and efficiently.
“We support Senate passage of the Defend Trade Secrets Act and urge the House to take swift action to get this legislation to the president’s desk for his signature.”
IP is truly a manufacturer’s “secret sauce.” It can include everything from the special recipe for a food or beverage to research, marketing data and customer lists. This proprietary information powers manufacturing innovation, in turn driving productivity and job creation for companies of all sizes.
The Defend Trade Secrets Act is a must-pass bill in this Congress, and we look forward to continuing our work on both sides of the aisle to advance it.
Learn more about manufacturing priorities for IP protection by clicking here.