Economic Prong Law and Legal Definition

Section 337 of the Tariff Act of 1930 is an important means for combating unfair practices in the import trade and especially for enforcing U.S. intellectual property rights at the border. In order to prove a violation of Section 337, a complainant must establish (1) unfair competition or an unfair act, e.g., patent infringement, (2) importation, sale for importation, or sale after importation into the United States of the accused products, and (3) the existence of a domestic industry relating to the product in question. The proof required to establish a domestic industry involves an "economic" prong and a "technical" prong. The economic prong can be satisfied by showing that there exists in the United States with respect to the products protected by the intellectual property right being asserted: significant investment in plant and equipment; significant employment of labor or capital; or substantial investment in its exploitation, including engineering, research and development, or licensing.