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Letter: Trade agreement helps small biz

President Barack Obama and House Minority Leader Nancy

President Barack Obama and House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi leave the Gabriel Zimmerman room after a meeting with members of the House Democratic caucus to discuss his trade agenda on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C., on Friday, June 12, 2015. Credit: TNS

Small businesses like mine can find tremendous growth opportunities in global markets ["Clinton opposes Obama trade deal," News, Oct. 8].

My company manufactures ultraviolet equipment. Almost half of our sales are overseas and that share continues to grow.

We face challenges, however, when it comes to protecting our intellectual property in other countries. While the United States has long had a strong patent system, we have found that it can be very expensive to defend our patents in other countries.

Trade agreements would protect small businesses like mine from having our intellectual property stolen. Right now, the Obama administration is finalizing the Trans-Pacific Partnership with countries in the Asia-Pacific. That agreement will ensure that our intellectual property is respected overseas, and it will establish a structure for enforcing our patents.

My company is trying to grow into more Asian markets and the Trans-Pacific Partnership will help us greatly. Expanding our business overseas helps us create more jobs at home here on Long Island.

I'm glad that Congress, including Rep. Kathleen Rice (D-Garden City), recently passed Trade Promotion Authority. This legislation will help the Obama administration finalize the partnership as well as additional trade agreements.

I hope Congress supports more trade agreements; they are critical for small businesses and the workers we employ.

Jon Cooper, Lloyd Harbor

Editor's note: The writer is a former Suffolk County legislator and is the national finance chairman for Draft Biden 2016.


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