Friday, U.S. Senators Todd Young (R-Ind.) and Tom Carper (D-Del.) were joined by a group of colleagues to introduce a bipartisan, bicameral resolution outlining the importance of the U.S. digital economy and the importance of greater U.S. leadership on digital trade negotiations with like-minded countries.
“In today’s hyper-connected world, the U.S. finds itself at a critical moment,”said Senator Young. “Digital trade is becoming the new frontier in economic strength, particularly in the post-pandemic economy. It is time to prioritize connectivity and the subsequent adoption of digital governance to shape regional norms and provide an alternative to restrictive policies promoted by our adversaries like China. As the U.S. is positioned to lead in the digital space, our resolution encourages American leadership on digital trade rules in order to secure 21st century opportunities for Hoosiers, small businesses, manufacturers, and domestic service industries.”
“As the digital economy increasingly drives growth and innovation across the globe, the United States has an opportunity to lead the world in establishing rules of the road for digital trade. Digital trade has the potential to uplift workers and spur innovation, while at the same time advancing our shared values of democracy, privacy, and the rule of law,” said Senator Carper. “I’m proud to introduce this bipartisan, bicameral resolution advocating for the United States to work with our allies across the globe to establish forward-looking global digital trade policies—so that workers and businesses in the First State and across our nation can continue to grow and thrive.”
In 2020, U.S. exports of digital services surpassed $520 billion, accounting for more than half of all U.S. services exports and generating a digital services trade surplus of $214 billion. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, demand and reliance on digital technologies and services, data flows, and e-commerce has only increased.
Accordingly, the resolution calls for the U.S. to “negotiate strong, inclusive, forward-looking, and enforceable rules on digital trade and the digital economy with like-minded countries as part of a broader trade and economic strategy to address digital barriers and ensure that the United States values of democracy, rule of law, freedom of speech, human and worker rights, privacy, and a free and open internet are at the very core of the digital world and advanced technology.”
In addition to Senators Young and Carper, the resolution was cosponsored by Senators Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) and Mike Crapo (R-Idaho), the chairman and ranking member of the Senate Finance Committee, Ben Cardin (D-Md.), and John Cornyn (R-Texas). A companion, bipartisan resolution led by Representatives Darin LaHood (R-Ill.), Suzan DelBene (D-Wash.), and Ami Bera (D-Calif.) was introduced in the U.S. House of Representatives.