Developments in Economic Theory and Trade Theory Concerning Intellectual Property
The macroeconomic and microeconomic benefits of telecommunications infrastructures have been documented in current literature. Their qualitative and quantitative impact is creating an unprecedented global interdependence. Information-intensive industries have been treated in OECD countries as constituting the key economic sector contributing to the growth of the GNP. Telecommunications networks provide services that have pervasive effects on the economy as a whole in that they significantly alter the structure of production and the organization of management (see OECD, 1987, Theme II). New products and services that stem from the information sector are affecting other economic activities directly or indirectly.
Domestic growth and trade opportunities in information markets are determined by the international environment and the availability of "electronic highways." The convergence of computers, satellites, and optical fiber has the effect of reducing costs of producing, processing, and distributing information. This renders a close dependence of the macroeconomy on the development of the telecommunications sector and gives to telecommunications policy a crucial importance at the national level that it did not have before. Therefore, the controversy concerning the regulation and deregula-