Motion Picture Association of America chairman Chris Dodd congratulated U.S. Trade Representative nominee Robert Lighthizer on his appointment and called for the USTR and MPAA to work together to protect intellectual property and expand markets.
The incoming Trump administration does not see eye-to-eye with the major studios on the Trans-Pacific Partnership, however. The TPP is a historic Pacific Rim trade agreement with 11 other countries that TV and film producers had been pushing for as a way to expand trade and access to Asia-Pacific markets.
While the MPAA hailed the agreement, Trump has called it a bad deal that he wants out of and has pledged that his negotiators will strike better ones.
The USTR is the lead negotiator on such trade deals.
“The MPAA congratulates Robert Lighthizer on his appointment by President-elect Donald Trump for USTR," Dodd said in a statement. "The American film and television industry is a key driver of the U.S. economy, and effective trade policies are crucial to its continued success. Our sector employs nearly two million American workers, while generating $16.3 billion in exports and registering a positive trade balance with nearly every country around the world.
“The USTR plays a critical role in fostering America’s creative industries by negotiating and enforcing trade agreements that protect U.S. intellectual property rights and expand access to foreign markets for U.S. film and television," Dodd continued. "Mr. Lighthizer’s extensive experience as a trade negotiator and advocate for U.S. workers and businesses, which includes serving as Deputy USTR in the Reagan Administration, will enable him to begin working immediately within the new Administration, with Congress, and with our trading partners to implement trade policies that benefit consumers, creators, and the national economy."