FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Jamie Hennigan (NAM)
Brian Noyes (GIPC)
AFTI to President Obama: Meeting with Prime Minister Modi is Critical Opportunity to Level Playing Field for U.S. Companies in India
16 Business Organizations Sign Letter Highlighting Trade, Investment and Intellectual Property Issues, Calling for Concrete Action
WASHINGTON, D.C., September 25, 2014 – The Alliance for Fair Trade with India (AFTI) sent a letter today urging U.S. President Barack Obama to press for concrete action to remove longstanding Indian trade and investment barriers and strengthen intellectual property (IP) protection and enforcement in his meeting with Prime Minister Narendra Modi next week.
“Prime Minister Modi has declared India ‘open for business.’ But to reboot a troubled and underperforming bilateral commercial relationship, he must translate promising rhetoric into real results,” said AFTI co-chair and National Association of Manufacturers Vice President of International Economic Affairs Linda Dempsey. “Manufacturers remain hopeful positive progress can be achieved. We will be watching for outcomes that can put U.S.-India trade and investment ties on a positive track and establish the foundation for a balanced and mutually beneficial partnership.”
In the letter, American business groups welcome the visit of Prime Minister Modi to the United States. They note Modi’s positive statements and early steps aimed at improving India’s business climate, and urge President Obama to prioritize action to strengthen intellectual property protection and enforcement in India and to remove Indian trade and investment barriers harming a wide range of U.S. industry sectors – from manufacturing, entertainment, and agriculture to telecommunications, solar energy, biopharmaceuticals, and semiconductors.
“The Prime Minister’s recent focus on establishing a uniform IP policy is a promising step toward reversing policy choices that have consistently undermined IP rights in the past,” said Mark Elliot, co-chair of AFTI and executive vice president of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce’s Global Intellectual Property Center. “In his meeting with Prime Minister Modi, the opportunity is ripe for President Obama to foster an open dialogue on how both nations can advance shared innovation and leverage mutually beneficial investments essential to our economic growth.”
A copy of the full letter can be found on the AFTI website here.
AFTI members signing the letter are: American Business Conference, American Foundry Society, Association of Equipment Manufacturers, Biotechnology Industry Organization, California Manufacturers & Technology Association, CropLife America, Emergency Committee for American Trade, INDA, Association of the Nonwoven Fabrics Industry, Motion Picture Association of America, National Association of Manufacturers, National Electrical Manufacturers Association, National Foreign Trade Council, Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America, Recording Industry Association of America, Telecommunications Industry Association, and U.S Chamber of Commerce’s Global Intellectual Property Center.
The Alliance for Fair Trade with India (AFTI) is committed to supporting U.S. businesses fighting against unfair and discriminatory treatment in India. For more information, go to AFTIndia.org.