US lobbyist: Canadians would get US government infrastructure contracts if it adopted US copyright laws

A prominent US lobbyist told Canadian Parliament that the US government would let Canadian companies bid on lucrative infrastructure contracts if Canada changes its copyright laws to meet the demands of big Hollywood studios and record labels.

In extreme cases, Canadian-made pipes were ripped out of the ground this year in California simply because of so-called Buy American polices that are now common among governments at the state and municipal level. Some say the incidents are likely under-reported as Canadian firms fear further headaches in the United States if they complain too loudly.

But Canada could solve the impasse immediately by addressing concerns that Canada is a haven for illegal piracy of copyrighted music, movies and other digital media, a Parliament Hill audience was told yesterday.

"You could solve Buy America tomorrow," said Scotty Greenwood, who is the executive-director of the Washington-based Canadian American Business Council. Ms. Greenwood was speaking not on behalf of the council, but as one of several trade experts invited to speak at a day-long panel on Parliament Hill organized by Liberal MP Scott Brison.

Could copyright reform win Buy American battle?

(via Michael Geist)