Having advocated for American workers for decades, I am concerned that we already have lost too many jobs to India through outsourcing. We cannot allow innovation to fall by the wayside and good jobs to disappear. In the 21st century, intangible assets such as intellectual property comprise an ever-increasing proportion of corporate assets. In 2010, IP-intensive industries accounted for about $5.06 trillion in value added to the U.S. economy, comprising roughly 35 percent of our gross domestic product. And IP-intensive jobs also pay better, yet another reason for the U.S. to take a stand now and let the world know that we will not tolerate losing more American jobs to countries that don’t honor their international commitments.
Congress must get involved and either force the administration’s hand to utilize platforms such as the WTO or bilateral negotiations, or pursue legislative angles to convince the Indian government that it’s in their best interest (and the global economy’s interest) to play by the rules. The Novartis decision should be a wake-up call. If we ignore it, we need to be ready to accept the economic consequences – only then, it will be too little, too late.
Ron Klink is a former Democratic member of Congress from Pennsylvania and a senior policy adviser at Nelson Mullins.