The American patent system stands at the center of our innovation economy. It really is the lifeblood of our economy. But the U.S. patent system is in decline. Once the global leader in patents issued, we fell to an embarrassing 10th in the world, in 2016 just behind Spain and Italy, countries not known for their innovation leadership. And the latest report from the U.S. Chamber of Commerce for 2017 shows an even more embarrassing slip to 12th in the world in patent protection, with Singapore and European Union countries leapfrogging ahead.
This year Congress has an opportunity to strengthen patent protections by passing the STRONGER (Support Technology & Research for Our Nation's Growth and Economic Resilience) Patents Act which is a bipartisan billintroduced by U.S. Senators Chris Coons (D-Del.), Tom Cotton (R- Ark.), Dick Durbin (D-Ill.), and Mazie Hirono (D-Haw.) The bill is designed to protect and support inventors and innovators. It would restore patents as essential property rights, make standards of protections in courts uniform, and protect start-ups from being out-resourced by technology incumbents. A companion STRONGER Patents Act house billhas also been introduced in the house by Congressman Steve Stivers (R-OH) and Congressman Bill Foster (D-IL).
Statistics from the Department of Commerce show that intellectual property industries make up more than 38 percent of the economy and support more than 45 million jobs. But when intellectual property is stolen, and patent rights are abused, businesses can be ruined financially and forced to close their doors. The STRONGER Patents Act is designed to change that and put strong patent protections back in place.
We support the passage of the STRONGER Patents Act and ask that you spread the word about its importance.