WASHINGTON — As Congress continues to debate U.S. trade policy, the Motion Picture Association of America wanted to remind lawmakers of the impact that policy has on the country's TV and movie exports.
"Although movies and TV shows aren’t often the first thing people think of when they think about U.S. trade policy, it’s our trade policy that facilitates the distribution of U.S. movies and TV shows in foreign markets and creates jobs here at home," the MPAA said in circulating a graphic representation of that impact. "In fact, over 70% of our industry’s theatrical revenue now comes from overseas, while at home, our industry generates a $13.4 billion positive services trade surplus and supports 1.9 million jobs," MPAA vice president of corporate communications Kate Bedingfield said.
The U.S. is negotiating an agreement, the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), that would expand trade, including access to creative content to much of the Asia-Pacific region, the MPAA noted. It would also create what it calls "strong standards for the protection and enforcement of intellectual property rights for the 21st century," the studio lobbying group said.
"Completion of a meaningful TPP will allow our flourishing industry to continue expanding into some of the world’s largest and most important markets to continue to build on this American success story," Bedingfield said Friday.
A vote was expected Friday on endorsing the TPP in the Senate, though not without pushback from some Democrats who argue it is a continuation of failed policy.
The Senate is expected to approve that authority, but the House has yet to weigh in.