Ashley A. Bautista

ATR Supports PNTR Bill in Senate


Posted by Ashley A. Bautista on Wednesday, June 13th, 2012, 1:32 PM PERMALINK

Today, Americans for Tax Reform announced its support of the Extension of Nondiscriminatory Treatment to Products of the Russian Federation.  The bill will lead to lower duties on U.S. exports and promote the endurance of an environment that allows American businesses and farmers to compete with those from around the world in Russia.  Without this bill, Russia’s pending admission to the World Trade Organization (WTO) would re-create Cold War-era difficulties in the U.S. trade relationship with Russia.

The extension of permanent normal trade negotiations (PNTR) to Russia will allow the current trade relationship between the U.S. and Russia to continue and flourish.  With the eleventh largest economy in the world, Russia has the potential to be one of our major trading partners, which can lead to more jobs, exports and economic prosperity on both sides of the trading relationship.

The bill was introduced in the Senate today by Max Baucus (D-Mont.), John Thune (R-S.D.), John Kerry (D-Mass.) and John McCain (R-Ariz.).   Russia is set to join the WTO this summer, creating a tight timetable for Congress to act in order for the U.S. to continue its existing trading relationships and allow the U.S. to enjoy the job creation and new markets made available through this legislation.

“In order for American enterprise to succeed, the first step is for government to get out of the way,” said Grover Norquist, president of Americans for Tax Reform. “In order for the government to stay out of the way once Russia is in the WTO, we need this bill.” Norquist continued, “Tariffs are taxes and taxes hurt American companies.  The Senate should support the Thune-Bacus bill to allow American companies to continue to sell their goods in Russia.  With the world’s highest corporate income taxes, we can’t afford further blows to our competitiveness."

The benefits from the PNTR bill with Russia as increased intellectual property rights protections, access to goods and services in the Russian economy, a boost in American jobs and opportunities for cooperative innovation.

The U.S. would benefit from Congress protecting our businesses by graduating Russia from the antiquated Jackson-Vanik Amendment to the Trade Act of 1974.  The 1970s amendment encourages Russian discrimination of American businesses and exports.  ATR has spoken out in the past about the damage from the old Jackson-Vanik amendment here.

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IP Helping the Homeland State by State


Posted by Ashley A. Bautista on Monday, June 11th, 2012, 3:29 PM PERMALINK

Intellectual property rights directly affect the economic growth and prosperity of a country.  The 2012 International Property Rights Index (IPRI) provides concrete data concerning the positive impacts of increased women’s rights to own and manage property, education, and intellectual property (IP), on the gross domestic product (GDP) of 130 countries from around the world.

The Global Intellectual Property Center (GIPC), a branch of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, found that IP-intensive industries provide 55.7 million direct and indirect jobs, over $5 trillion in national GDP and about three-quarters of U.S. exports.  The actual study titled “IP Creates Jobs for America” can be found here; make sure to look up your state and see how intellectual property has directly affected its economy.

Many state legislators have emphasized the findings of this study.  Senator Pat Roberts (R-KS) said,

 “When you think of Kansas, intellectual property may not automatically come to mind. But, in the Heartland of America, IP is a key component of our daily bread.”

With an ever-growing technological base and new research and development (R&D) advancements every day, it is safe to say that the IP industries are here to stay.  IP-intensive industries are valuable assets to our economy and are responsible for keeping us afloat during the economic turmoil that we have endured in recent years.

Our policymakers, representatives and officials need to recognize the vital role that IP industries have in our economy.  They should take every measure to protect these industries and companies through legislative means.  The study done by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce established that individual states benefit from IP growth

Some of the many positive impacts from IP related industries are increased wages, new jobs and significant contributions to the GDP at the state and national levels. IP industries must be protected in order to ensure that these benefits continue to be enjoyed by each of the state economies.

This article is cross-posted on the PRA website.  This is the main version of the blog post.

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UN Tax Bureaucrats Coming to a Town Near You


Posted by Ashley A. Bautista on Friday, June 1st, 2012, 11:21 AM PERMALINK

There are ongoing debates over tax hikes and cuts in the United States domestic front, which makes it extremely frightening to imagine a world in which third-party, international organizations could impose taxes on countries. Global taxes would give the power to tax overseas to organizations such as the World Health Organization (WHO) and the United Nations (UN).

The Center for Freedom and Prosperity released a study titled “Global Taxes Threaten Fiscal Sovereignty and Democratic Accountability” which can be viewed here. If these organizations succeed in passing their proposed global taxes, they would be applied in a "one size fits all" manner to the affected nations.

There is much at stake when international organizations, such as these, seek to impose taxes on sovereign nations. The individual freedom of each nation and their ability to tax their own citizens at rates they desire and see fit for their country’s needs are in jeopardy. What laws will govern WHO and the UN if these taxes are imposed on the sovereign nations? No international governing body exists to enforce these taxes and the countries involved will no longer have the final say in which taxes should be imposed on its citizens.

The transcendence of international boundaries on taxation issues by the UN and WHO will transform the protocol of taxation methods by extending it to a multilateral position. Where is the political accountability in the equation? That is the question we should be asking ourselves. These multinational organizations should not manipulate the power of the sovereign nations at the interstate level to compete for the last say in tax regulations.

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