U.S. Chamber of Commerce Applauds New Digital Trade Officer Program

March 12, 2016

This post originally appeared on the Department of Commerce blog.

Adam Schlosser, Senior Director and Policy Counsel, Center for Global Regulatory Cooperation, U.S. Chamber of Commerce

Adam Schlosser, Senior Director and Policy Counsel, Center for Global Regulatory Cooperation, U.S. Chamber of Commerce

Guest blog post by Adam Schlosser, Senior Director and Policy Counsel, Center for Global Regulatory Cooperation, U.S. Chamber of Commerce

With the increasing interconnected nature of the global economy, never before has it been so easy, or routine, for a U.S. company to become a “multinational company.”  All it takes to reach the 95% of consumers living outside our borders is a great product and an Internet connection. In fact, digital trade generates over $8 trillion a year to the global economy and the ability to transfer data is directly responsible for $2.8 trillion.

And these benefits flow to companies of every size and sector. Three quarters of the value created by digital trade accrues to firms not usually viewed as “Internet companies,” such as manufacturers, retailers and banks. Today, every successful business operates digitally in some capacity, from managing customer relationships to operating a global supply chain.

Despite the important benefits of digital trade, U.S. companies are increasingly encountering barriers abroad, including misguided attempts to build domestic industry through localization requirements. Unfortunately, these efforts merely raise costs and cut off consumers from using the best available technology.

However, the U.S. government has consistently been a great partner in the fight to remove barriers and preserve the ability of companies to seamlessly operate globally. We’ve had great success teaming up to push back against localization and other potentially problematic rules many places around the world. If anything, the main question is how can we ensure that success stories become even more routine.

Therefore, the creation of a digital trade officer program is a welcome and important initiative. We are excited about the potential to capitalize on smart, hardworking foreign officers dedicated to digital issues at key posts. Providing continued on-the-ground expertise will proactively prevent detrimental policies from developing and ensure that the immense benefits of digital trade continue to grow. These new “digital attaches” will be working to support literally millions of jobs in both the U.S and in markets where they are posted.

The digital trade officer program brings cutting-edge commercial diplomacy tactics to the cutting-edge segment of the global economy. The Chamber, and the entire U.S. business community, looks forward to supporting these efforts towards continued and sustained success in the future.

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce is the world’s largest business organization representing the interests of over 3 million businesses of all sizes, sectors, and regions.  For over 100 years, we have been the voice for the U.S. private sector in Washington, DC and capitals around the world.  

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